Serie A wrap: Pazzini sparks Inter, Napoli win

Giampaolo Pazzini scored a brace on debut as Inter Milan came from behind to defeat Palermo 3-2 in Serie A on Sunday.

Pazzini, who moved to the San Siro from Italian rivals Sampdoria on Friday, single-handedly dragged Inter back into the match after the treble-winning champions found themselves two goals down by the 36th minute.


Palermo started brightly and took the lead in just the fifth minute through Fabrizio Miccoli, though his goal owed much to right-back Mattia Cassani.


Cassani charged onto a wayward pass on the right flank, shimmied around Davide Santon and fired a terrific cross to Miccoli, who finished from close range.


Midfielder Antonio Nocerino put the hosts further ahead just after the half-hour mark, latching on to a loose ball in the area, working his way past Inter full-back Maicon and pushing a low shot inside the near post under a diving Julio Cesar.


But Italy striker Pazzini netted his first goal in the Inter shirt 12 minutes after the restart, pulling down substitute and fellow debutant Houssine Kharja’s rising pass, turning and poking past Palermo goalkeeper Salvatore Sirigu.


His second goal was no less impressive, with the 26-year-old thumping a header inside the right post from Maicon’s free kick in the 73rd minute.


Samuel Eto’o capped Inter’s dramatic comeback three minutes later, beating Sirigu from the spot after Ezequiel Munoz dragged down Pazzini in the area.


Meanwhile, Napoli kept their title hopes alive with a 4-0 thumping of Sampdoria.


Edison Cavani scored a hat-trick and Marek Hamsik grabbed another for Napoli, who remain second on the table and four points behind league leaders AC Milan.


Elsewhere, Chievo ended an eight-match winless run with a 3-0 victory over struggling Brescia, while relegation battlers Lecce and Cesena fought out a 1-1 draw.


Cagliari defeated bottom-placed Bari 2-1 on striker Alessandro Matri’s brace, and Genoa overran Parma 3-1.


Roma’s clash at Bologna was abandoned after 17 minutes due to excessive snow on the pitch at the Stadio Renato Dall’Ara.


Udinese moved into sixth place with a 2-1 win over Juventus in Turin.


Juventus scored first through a stunning Claudio Marchisio volley after an hour but Cristian Zapata equalised seven minutes later from close range.


Alexis Sanchez scored the winner five minutes from time but the drama was far from over.


Juve’s Leonardo Bonucci was shown the red card for a foul on Sanchez, who was also sent off moments later for a challenge on Fabio Grosso.