Serie A - Milan inflict second defeat on Juve

Serie A, San Siro – AC Milan 1 (Robinho pen 31) Juventus 0

AC Milan inflicted only the second defeat on Juventus this season and their first away from home for 18 months as Robinho slotted home a controversial first-half penalty to give the home side a 1-0 win at the San Siro.

Mauricio Isla was harshly penalised for handling the ball in the box and Robinho squeezed home the resultant penalty under Gianluigi Buffon to hand Juve their second defeat in a month to Milan opposition and first away defeat in 29 matches.

The result lifts the pressure on Massimiliano Allegri and his side climb to eighth in the table, above Atalanta on goal difference.

Robinho, making his first start in Milan colours since the opening match of the season, was instrumental in Milan’s victory and caused the usually resolute Juventus defence a number of problems before his cross should have been headed home by Antonio Nocerino.

The midfielder badly misjudged his header allowing Isla to chest down and clear the ball out of danger. But referee Nicola Rizzola saw things differently and amazingly pointed to the spot for a hand ball. Robinho stepped up and his penalty was far from perfect and Buffon guessed right but the ball squeezed under his body.

Buoyed by their impressive 3-1 victory in Anderlecht that saw them progress to the knockout stages of the Champions League in midweek, Milan started brightly and Mattia De Sciglio shot just wide from Nigel De Jong’s pass in the opening moments.

De Jong then set Milan on the attack again and Buffon had to be alert to save Kevin-Prince Boateng’s shot with his legs. Juve’s attacks were sporadic, Fabio Quagliarella shooting straight at Marco Amelia from Jovan Vucinic’s lovely flick.

Milan continued to create chances in the second half and a mad pass from Buffon in the opening minutes almost let Stephan El Shaarawy in, Andrea Barzagli just getting in a last-ditch challenge.

Juve’s one real chance fell to substitute Sebastian Giovinco, on for Quagliarella, his spectacular bicycle kick flying just wide of the post. And Vucinic also went close to dragging an under par Juve level on the night, Kevin Constant clearing his goalbound effort off the line with the keeper beaten.

Milan, however, were well worth their victory that does their close neighbours Internazionale a big favour. Juventus remain on top of the table but their lead at the top is now only four points and second placed Internazionale have a game in hand.