Soccer

Inter Milan draws with struggling Bologna in Serie A

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The Canadian Press
4/5/2014 5:33:23 PM
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MILAN, Italy -- Inter Milan twice squandered the lead and missed a penalty as its Europa League hopes were dented by a 2-2 draw at home to relegation-threatened Bologna in Serie A on Saturday.

Mauro Icardi scored twice for Inter but his goals were cancelled out by Michele Pazienza and Panagiotis Kone.

Substitute Diego Milito had his penalty saved by Bologna goalkeeper Gianluca Curci six minutes from time after Rodrigo Palacio was hauled down by Andrea Mantovani.

Inter, which was booed off the pitch at halftime and full time, remained fifth but Atalanta can close the gap to one point with a win over Sassuolo on Sunday.

"I haven't been talking about bad luck, but just certain episodes," Inter coach Walter Mazzarri said. "You only need to look at the goals we concede. A counterattack can happen, but the first equalizer went through a thousand legs. ... But that's our year. It's the fourth time we've thrown away points like this in a match we deserved to win."

Bologna moved level with Chievo Verona, which lost a city derby 1-0 against Hellas Verona.

They are two points above the relegation zone ahead of the rest of the weekend's fixtures.

Inter got off to a perfect start when Icardi volleyed home Yuto Nagatomo's cross with less than six minutes on the clock.

Bologna levelled 10 minutes from halftime. Inter goalkeeper Samir Handanovic made a fantastic save to deny Lazaros Christodoulopoulos from close range but the ball came out to Pazienza who drove a low shot in from the edge of the area.

Icardi doubled his tally shortly after the hour mark when he curled a stunning effort from outside the area into the top far corner off the inside of the post.

Inter's defence was caught napping for Bologna's second equalizer 10 minutes later as Esteban Cambiasso and Rolando completely failed to deal with a cross and Kone tapped it in from five yards.

Inter could have scored a late winner when it was awarded its first penalty of the season but Milito failed to get any power behind his spot kick and Curci parried comfortably.

Bologna should have snatched a win but Handanovic pulled off a fantastic double save to deny substitute Robert Acquafresca from point-blank range.

Luca Toni struck again in Verona. The Chievo defence failed to deal with a cross in the 65th minute and the 36-year-old Toni slotted home from six yards for his third goal in two matches and his 16th of the season.

Verona had gone close to breaking the deadlock on several occasions, notably on the stroke of halftime when Hallfredsson's 25-yard effort crashed off the top corner of the frame of the goal.

Chievo almost snatched a draw but Cyril Thereau volleyed into the sidenetting.

Verona moved provisionally a point off the Europa League places.

Soccer Ball (Photo: The Canadian Press)

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(Photo: The Canadian Press)
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