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Roma mar Milan legend Maldini's last home match

Roma mar Milan legend Maldini's last home match

Roma beat Milan 3-2 in Paolo Maldini's San Siro farewell.

New Delhi: Attacks were clearly on top as Roma beat Milan 3-2 in Paolo Maldini's San Siro farewell.

Pre-Match News

Mathieu Flamini and David Beckham were restored to the line-up after returning to the match as the Rossoneri wore special jerseys to honour Paolo Maldini in his final home match.

Meanwhile, Juan returned to the centre of the defence for Roma and Marco Cassetti was deployed on the right of midfield.

First Half

The first chance fell to the visitors as Mirko Vucinic's through ball left Flamini for dead and Rodrigo Taddei's shot was cleared by a kick save from Nelson Dida.

The match continued without many real chances until 20 minutes, when Inzaghi was called offside on what looked like a very close decision when he would've been one-on-one with Artur. Vucinic then skinned Giuseppe Favalli down the left, but Andrea Pirlo and Maldini shut him down before he could pull the trigger.

Beckham played one of his trademark long raking passes, but Pato's first touch let him down and Artur collected. Matteo Brighi played a give-and-go with captain Francesco Totti and fired just wide as the match began to open up and take on a higher tempo.

This time, the English international found Pato on the counter and Artur made an excellent save getting down to block the Brazilian starlet's low drive.

The Giallorossi took the lead through a vintage goal by John Arne Riise. A freekick was played short for the Norwegian on the edge of the box to hammer it in the top corner!

The home side had Artur scrambling, but Pato's vicious volley was cleared by the head of Motta too keep Roma in the lead on the verge of half-time.

Second Half

To begin the second half Carlo Ancelotti made a change subbing off Beckham for Clarence Seedorf in order to find a way back into the match.

The Dutchman's impact was immediate as he played in Pippo Inzaghi, the Italian was tapped by the trailing leg of Juan, but there was no penalty as Artur was already in the process of picking up the ball.

'Carletto' then used his remaining substitutions, bringing in Ronaldinho and Gianluca Zambrotta for Jankulovski and Pato. Pirlo nearly found an equalizer after Artur punched a Zambrotta cross clear, but Pirlo's one-timer from just outside the area was wayward.

Milan were coming closer and closer to an equaliser, as Kaka whipped in a low ball that Seedorf just failed to redirect into the net from a close position.

Artur then made a string of strong saves on 65', first finger tipping Kaka curling effort and then knocking Massimo Ambrosini's header away.

The Rossoneri finally found their sought after goal on 74 minutes. Kaka flew down the right and found Inzaghi, whose volley was parried away into the path of the onrushing Ambrosini to level the scores at 1-1.

Substitute Jeremy Menez nearly restored the lead as he waltzed into the box, but was eventually blocked by Giuseppe Favalli as he was about to pull the trigger.

Menez then did put the Giallorossi back in front on the counter attack! Riise and the Frenchman combined well and the player burst past the Rossoneri defence and slipped his low effort under Dida.

It didn't last long, as Seedorf put the ball wide for Kaka and the Brazilian international's cross left Artur stranded for Ambrosini to grab his second of the match.

Totti had been largely disappointing thus far, but his powerful freekick earned Roma the lead once more as it flew into the side netting.

Zambrotta was asking for a penalty with just a couple minutes remaining, although there was minimal contact,. It was not given and Ambrosini took his protests too far and was sent off by the referee.

One of Maldini's final contributions was blocking a shot for Roma and the Rossoneri captain looked disappointed as the referee blew the final whistle.

Milan 2-3 Roma

Goals: 36' Riise (R), 75' and 81' Ambrosini (M), 80' Menez (R), 84' Totti (R)

Sent Off: 88' Ambrosini (M)

Milan (4-3-1-2): Dida - Flamini, Maldini, Favalli, Jankulovski (60' Zambrotta) - Beckham (46' Seedorf), Pirlo, Ambrosini - Kaka - Inzaghi, Pato (60' Ronaldinho)

Roma (4-4-2): Artur - Motta, Mexes, Juan (68' Diamoutene), Riise - Cassetti (62' Felipe), Pizarro, Brighi, Taddei - Totti, Vucinic (75' Menez)

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first published:May 25, 2009, 14:26 IST