Serie A: Inter Milan moves two points clear with win over Frosinone
MILAN (AP) — Inter Milan moved two points clear at the top of Serie A with a 4-0 win over struggling Frosinone on Sunday after title rival Fiorentina was held to a 2-2 draw by Empoli.
Goals from Jonathan Biabiany, Mauro Icardi, Jeison Murillo and Marcelo Brozovic helped Inter to its first win by more than a one-goal margin since April.
"There is still a lot of the season to go," Inter coach Roberto Mancini said. "I think there are three or four teams which are more organized and stronger than us, with players who have been together for longer and are more prepared to win than us. But we are happy to be there at the top."
Nikola Kalinic scored twice in five minutes, and also hit the bar, as Fiorentina fought back from two goals down in the Tuscan derby, while Gonzalo Higuain was on target again as Napoli won 2-0 at Hellas Verona.
It was the Argentine's 10th league goal of the season and was set up by Lorenzo Insigne, who scored the opener.
Napoli and Fiorentina have 28 points, one more than Roma, which was held to a 2-2 draw at Bologna on Saturday.
Sassuolo remained fifth, despite losing 2-1 at Genoa in a match that saw both sides reduced to 10 men at the end of the first half.
Elsewhere, Vincenzo Montella's first match as Sampdoria coach ended in defeat as his new team lost 1-0 at Udinese, while Lazio ended a run of three successive defeats by coming from behind to draw 1-1 against Palermo.
Carpi remained level with bottom club Verona after losing 2-1 at home to Chievo Verona. The two teams are seven points from safety.
Torino won 1-0 at Atalanta.
The French national anthem was played before each Serie A match and supporters displayed several banners in support of their neighbors little over a week after the deadly attacks in Paris that claimed 130 lives and left hundreds more injured.
There were also thousands of French flags waved by the fans in Udine. In Florence a huge banner was unfurled with the words "close to the French people." There were similar banners of support shown by fans elsewhere in Italy too.
Inter knew it could go clear at the top of the league after Fiorentina drew in the afternoon but the San Siro was almost stunned into silence in the seventh minute as only a fine Samir Handanovic diving save prevented Danilo Soddimo from volleying relegation-threatened Frosinone into a shock lead.
Biabiany had been given his first start in more than a year, having spent most of that time sidelined with a heart problem, and he marked the occasion with a goal on the rebound after Frosinone goalkeeper Nicola Leali did well to parry Adem Ljajic's curled effort.
"I am happy for Biabiany," Mancini added. "He had a serious problem, and risked having to quit football. He can certainly give us more quality and pace. And he can still improve."
Inter doubled its advantage in the 53rd. Ljajic played a smart one-two with Icardi and then returned the ball for the Argentine to tap in from close range.
Murillo scored his first club goal in nearly two years three minutes from time, firing between Leali's legs after a delightful backheel from Stevan Jovetic.
Brozovic, who had only been on the pitch for a couple of minutes, added to Frosinone's humiliation in stoppage time following another Ljajic assist.
Earlier, Fiorentina was looking to move back top after Napoli's win but it had a miserable first half.
Empoli took the lead in the 18th minute, although Marko Livaja was clearly offside when he latched onto Riccardo Saponara's through ball and fired inside the near post.
The visitors doubled their lead nine minutes later when a free kick wasn't cleared and Marcel Buchel smashed in the rebound.
Fiorentina coach Paulo Sousa made a double change at the break, including bringing on Kalinic.
The Croatia forward headed in Marcos Alonso's cross 11 minutes into the second half and leveled shortly afterward when Khouma Babacar volleyed across Federico Bernardeschi's pass.