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1 vs 1
Played
February 10, 2013 9:00 AM EST
Stadio Is Arenas — Quartu Sant'Elena
Referee:‬ A. Giannoccaro‎
Attendance:‬ 9500‎
 
Mario Balotelli 82′ (PG)
Top of the Match
Víctor Ibarbo
Víctor Ibarbo
Cagliari
Mario Balotelli
Mario Balotelli
Milan
Flop of the Match
Sulley Muntari
Sulley Muntari
Milan
Davide Astori
Davide Astori
Cagliari

Cagliari 1-1 AC Milan: Balotelli rescues Rossoneri against Rossoblu

The Rossoneri are three points behind Lazio after the Italian converted once again from 12 yards to prevent his side slipping to defeat in Sardinia against 10 men

By Robin Bairner

Balotelli & Astori - Cagliari-Milan - Serie A
Getty Images
Mario Balotelli was on target once again for AC Milan as they ground out a 1-1 draw at Cagliari in Serie A on Sunday afternoon.

The pragmatic home side ceded much possession to their opponents, yet it fashioned the better chances in the opening period and scored on the stroke of halftime thanks to an astute header from Victor Ibarbo. It soaked up great pressure in the second period, but eventually they crumbled as Davide Astore was dismissed and Balotelli converted from the spot.

Philippe Mexes, who had a wretched afternoon, conceded a needless free kick 35 yards from his goal, and the resultant delivery from Danieli Conti was beautifully glanced home by the Colombian.

Milan seemed to have been successfully frustrated, yet 10 minutes from time it received a lifeline when Davide Astori foolishly held Balotelli as the ball span in the air after Robinho’s shot was kicked clear by the goalkeeper. From the spot, the Italian preserved his perfect record from 12 yards while the defender was walking down the tunnel having been shown his second yellow card.

Balotelli nearly secured maximum points three minutes from the end, but his header from six yards was straight at Agazzi.

Ibardo really should have had his first goal of the season before that moment. During the first half he was released by the impressive Conti, but after beating compatriot Cristian Zapata he had the ball robbed from him by Ignazio Abate.

Marco Sau’s cunning was to the fore as the next chance was fashioned for the South American down the left channel, but the forward slashed hopelessly over the top with only Christian Abbiati to beat.

To that point, Milan had been extremely flat. Although M’Baye Niang was making progress down the right wing, only Balotelli was provoking any real threat to Michael Agazzi’s goal. Having struck twice last weekend, the striker was full of confidence, yet his long-range free kicks were comfortably fielded by Agazzi, despite their awkward, bobbling nature.

While the hosts had provided a genuine counterattacking threat in the opening half, they were considerably more limited after the break and became largely a defensive unit. Despite this, their well-organized nature meant that Milan were asphyxiated and there appeared no prospect of a leveling goal before Astori’s moment of foolishness.

The draw means that Milan remains unbeaten in Serie A since the turn of the year, yet it has not made the inroads desired into the three-point advantage that Lazio now holds over it.

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Cagliari

-
Michael Agazzi
Goalkeeper
4.00
13
Davide Astori
Defender
67′ 81′
3.50
14
3.00
15
Luca Rossettini
Defender
3.50
29
Nicola Murru
Defender
47′ 70′
3.50
5
Daniele Conti
Midfielder
45′ 51′
4.00
20
Albin Ekdal
Midfielder
3.50
21
Daniele Dessena
Midfielder
68′
3.00
-
3.00
23
4.00
9
Marco Sau
Striker
76′
3.00

Milan

3.00
32
3.00
2
2.50
5
2.50
17
3.50
20
2.00
4
Sulley Muntari
Midfielder
3.50
20
3.00
21
3.00
9
3.50
45
2.50
92

Substitutes

25
Vlada Avramov
Goalkeeper
 - 
-
3.00
24
 - 
34
 - 
7
Andrea Cossu
Midfielder
56′
3.00
16
 - 
-
 - 
18
Nenê
Striker
 - 
51
3.00

Substitutes

 - 
1
Marco Amelia
Goalkeeper
 - 
59
Gabriel
Goalkeeper
 - 
33
Mario Yepes
Defender
 - 
3
 - 
81
 - 
-
3.00
9
 - 
-
Bakaye Traoré
Midfielder
2.50
7
Robinho
Striker
80′
3.00
-

Coach/Manager

-
 - 

Coach/Manager

 - 
-
 
  • Goal
  • Own Goal
  • Penalty
  • Penalty Missed
  • Yellow Card
  • Assist
  • Penalty Save
  • Penalty Shootout Goal
  • Penalty Shootout Miss
  • Yellow Card / Red Card
  • Red Card
  • Substitution IN
  • Substitution OUT
  • Injury
  • Goal.com Rating
  • Goal.com Man of the Match
  • Goal.com Flop of the Match
  • Top & Flop Global Ranking
  • Fans' Man of the Match
  • Fans' Flop of the Match
Results
 
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Ciro Immobile Ciro Immobile
Striker
Torino
20 0
Luca Toni Luca Toni
Striker
Hellas Verona
18 2
Carlos Tévez Carlos Tévez
Striker
Juventus
18 1
Gonzalo Higuaín Gonzalo Higuaín
Striker
Napoli
17 5
Rodrigo Palacio Rodrigo Palacio
Striker
Inter
15 0