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Roma beats Genoa 2-0 to move 2nd in Serie A as city rival Lazio draws 1-1 at Atalanta

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MILAN — Roma overtook Lazio for second spot in Serie A with a 2-0 win over Genoa on Sunday as its city rival drew 1-1 at relegation-threatened Atalanta.

Roma moved a point above Lazio and 15 below Juventus, which clinched a fourth successive title on Saturday.

Fourth-place Napoli moved to within four points of Lazio and the final Champions League berth after it won 3-0 at home against AC Milan, which held out for 70 minutes with 10 men after Mattia De Sciglio was sent off after just 49 seconds. Milan goalkeeper Diego Lopez had saved Gonzalo Higuain's penalty.

Seydou Doumbia and Alessandro Florenzi, who both scored in a 3-0 win at Sassuolo midweek, fired Roma to victory in the lunchtime kickoff.

"It was the perfect game for us from tactical, technical and mental viewpoints," Roma coach Rudi Garcia said. "Of course the second goal came a bit late for Roma fans' hearts, but what was important was to win.

"Second place will go to who wants it the most, and we have to be that team."

Roma remained second after Marco Parolo cancelled out former Lazio defender Giuseppe Biava's opener for Atalanta. Lazio plays Roma and Napoli in its final two matches.

"We mustn't look at Roma's results but at our own," Parolo said. "There are four matches left, if we win all of them it will be us going to the Champions League."

Fiorentina boosted its hopes of securing a European berth next season with a 3-1 win against Cesena, while Inter Milan was held to a goalless draw at home by Chievo Verona.

Elsewhere, substitute Antonio Di Natale overtook Italy great Roberto Baggio in the scoring charts. He scored his 206th Serie A goal three minutes after coming off the bench to give Udinese a 1-0 win at Hellas Verona, which finished the match with nine men after Jacopo Sala and Rafael Marquez were sent off.

Genoa had a dismal record at Roma, having not picked up a point since 1994 and it fell to a ninth successive defeat.

PHOTO: Roma’s Seydou Doumbia, left, celebrates with teammate Daniele De Rossi after scoring during a Serie A soccer match between Roma and Genoa at Rome's Olympic stadium, Sunday, May 3, 2015. (AP Photo/Riccardo De Luca)
Roma’s Seydou Doumbia, left, celebrates with teammate Daniele De Rossi after scoring during a Serie A soccer match between Roma and Genoa at Rome's Olympic stadium, Sunday, May 3, 2015. (AP Photo/Riccardo De Luca)

Doumbia, who is slowly winning his critics around after a difficult time since signing from CSKA Moscow in January, opened the scoring in the 35th minute, feinting around two players and firing past Mattia Perin.

Florenzi sealed the result in stoppage-time, racing almost the entire length of the field before entering the penalty area and blasting the ball into the top near corner.

Lazio knew it had to win to reclaim second spot but had a surprisingly poor record in Bergamo, winning just seven times along with 20 draws and 19 defeats.

It almost took an early lead as Keita Balde Diao struck the post with a long-range strike in the sixth minute.

Atalanta also hit the post through Alejandro Gomez moments before breaking the deadlock at the start of the second half when Biava, who spent 4 1/2 years at Lazio before moving last July, headed home a corner.

Parolo leveled in the 77th from a corner, with a scissor-kick volley on the turn which bounced down and into the right side of the net.

In the evening kickoff, Napoli coach Rafa Benitez rested several players ahead of Thursday's Europa League semifinal.

Milan got off to the worst possible start when De Sciglio conceded a penalty and was sent off for bringing down Marek Hamsik in the opening minute. Diego Lopez made it less disastrous when he dove to his right to brilliantly deny Higuain. It was the Argentina forward's third failed penalty attempt in six this season.

Milan clung on and even had the better of the first-half chances, with Giacomo Bonaventura heading Salvatore Bocchetti's cross onto the outside of the left post.

Napoli improved after the break and Hamsik hit the upright too before three goals in six minutes ended Milan's resistance, with Hamsik, Higuain and substitute Manolo Gabbiadini finding the back of the net.

Fiorentina also boosted its confidence ahead of its Europa League semifinal tie with a convincing win which moved it up to fifth, increasing its chances of qualifying for Europe next season.

Josip Ilicic scored twice — including a penalty — and Alberto Gilardino added a third before Alejandro Rodriguez grabbed a consolation for Cesena, which remained level on points with Cagliari in the relegation zone, nine below 17th-placed Atalanta.

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PHOTO: Roma’s Seydou Doumbia, left, celebrates with teammate Daniele De Rossi after scoring during a Serie A soccer match between Roma and Genoa at Rome's Olympic stadium, Sunday, May 3, 2015. (AP Photo/Riccardo De Luca)
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