Torino stun city rivals Juventus

Three points from their rivals at the Stadio Olimpico, coupled with a negative result for nearest challengers Lazio, could have seen Juventus open up an 18-point lead with only six games remaining.

Andrea Pirlo did put them on the right track but Matteo Darmian pegged them back just before the break and Juventus old boy Fabio Quagliarella forced his recent employers to wait a little while longer for the championship by settling a 2-1 win for Torino.

Chievo striker Alberto Paloschi equalised 15 minutes from time to deny Lazio an important home win on Sunday in their push for the Champions League.

Miroslav Klose gave the hosts the lead on the stroke of half-time and they had chances to double their advantage but the visitors got level when Paloschi’s right-footed volley left Lazio goalkeeper Federico Marchetti rooted to the spot.

Gonzalo Higuain scored twice as Napoli strengthened their claim for a Champions League place with a 4-2 victory over Sampdoria.

Raul Albiol’s early own goal gave Sampdoria a shock lead but fourth-placed Napoli wrested back control before half-time thanks to strikes from Manolo Gabbiadini and Higuain.

A superb third from Lorenzo Insigne put the Azzurri firmly in control and there was still time for Higuain to add another from the spot to bring Napoli to within two points of Roma. Luis Muriel added a consolation.

Duje Cop ensured Gianluca Festa’s debut on the Cagliari bench went swimmingly with a brace to down Fiorentina 3-1 at the Stadio Artemio Franchi.

Former Inter Milan and Middlesbrough player Festa has been charged with leading the Sardinians’ survival bid and before kick-off they were 10 points shy of safety.

Seventeenth-placed Atalanta are now seven points away thanks to goals in each half from Cop and a last-gasp screamer from Diego Farias, while veteran striker Alberto Gilardino managed a late response for the hosts.

Atlanta got a point after German Denis’ last-gasp goal earned them a 2-2 draw with Empoli.

With both teams looking to put some distance between themselves and the relegation zone, the visitors looked to be heading for an important win after Massimo Maccarone struck on the hour for a 2-1 lead.

However, Denis headed in substitute Urby Emanuelson’s cross to earn the hosts a 2-2 draw.

Riccardo Saponara had put Empoli ahead in the 41st minute before Alejandro Gomez pulled Atalanta level two minutes later.

Genoa resumed their late push for a place in the Europa League places by beating 10-man Cesena 3-1 at the Stadio Luigi Ferraris.

Defeat at Palermo knocked the Rossoblu off their stride but goals from Andrea Bertolacci, Diego Perotti and Leonardo Pavoletti put them back in the race for a top-six finish.

Cesena, who responded through Carlos Carbonero late on, lost Ze Eduardo to a red card at the death and sit eight points behind Atalanta and safety with six games remaining.

Antonio Nocerino scored a first-half penalty to hand bottom-side Parma a 1-0 home triumph over Palermo on Sunday and keep their faint hopes of remaining in Serie A alive.

The Italian midfielder converted the spot-kick in the 22nd minute after Palermo’s Massimo Gobbi brought down Andrea Rispoli in the area.

Elsewhere, Luca Toni struck twice in the second half to fire 10-man Hellas Verona to a 3-2 home triumph over Sassuolo.

Hellas lost goalkeeper Rafael to a red card in the 17th minute for handling the ball outside the area, but took a 30th-minute lead through Juanito Gomez.

The visitors equalised five minutes later when Vangelis Moras struck the ball into his own net in an attempt to stop Sassuolo’s Simone Zaza from tapping in a Simone Missiroli cross.

Substitute Antonio Floro Flores gave Sassuolo an 89th-minute lifeline, but Hellas held on for their 10th win of the campaign.