Milan rally to defeat 10-man Catania 3-1
By Daniella Matar, AP
December 2, 2012, 12:00 am TWN
MILAN--AC Milan came from behind to beat 10-man Catania 3-1 in Serie A on Friday as its recent resurgence continues.
Catania took the lead in the 11th minute when former Milan defender Nicola Lettograglie headed in a corner as the Rossoneri conceded yet again from a dead-ball situation.
However, the match swung Milan's way after the interval as Catania was forced to play almost the whole of the second half with 10 men following Pablo Barrientos' sending off.
Stephan El Shaarawy scored twice either side of a stunning strike from Kevin-Prince Boateng, who was shown a straight red card in the final minute.
The Catania players protested furiously after El Shaaraway's first strike as he was clearly offside, but the goal was given. The 20-year-old has now scored 12 goals in the league this season, four more than any other player in Serie A.
"The first goal from El Shaarawy was offside," Milan coach Massimiliano Allegri said. "It was easy to see. It was tough on Catania, because they played a really good game.
"The first half was very even, but we improved vastly in the second half. It is an important win for us and it allows us to continue the good form we are on."
Milan hadn't lost in Catania since 1963 but hadn't won any of its past five away games, while the Sicilian side had lost just once at home this season.
However, Milan was full of confidence after beating defending champion and Serie A leader Juventus 1-0 in its previous match.
Milan's downfall this season has been set pieces and that was to again prove its undoing as Lettograglie rose above Francesco Acerbi to powerfully head home Francesco Lodi's corner.
Milan slowly started to improve but struggled to find a way past Catania's solid defense.
Catania was reduced to 10 men at the start of the second half when Barrientos was shown a second yellow card for a needless kick on Antonio Nocerino. Barrientos had picked up his first booking four minutes from the break for diving.
Milan leveled in the 53rd when Robinho flicked on Boateng's cross for an easy tap-in for El Shaarawy.
And the visiting side was ahead just three minutes later when Boateng picked up the ball 25 meters from goal, swiveled and created some space for himself before unleashing a wonderful strike into the top right corner.
Robinho missed a glorious chance 10 minutes from time when he blazed over from close range, in front of an open goal.
Milan went even closer as Robinho's shot was parried by Mariano Andujar at point-blank range, and the rebound fell to Urby Emanuelson who fired off the left upright.
Boateng was given a straight red in the final minute after a two-footed lunge on Giovanni Marchese.
El Shaarawy sealed the result in stoppage time, curling a stunning shot into the far corner.