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Kaka winner keeps Milan on track for title
Updated: 2004-04-18 11:23

Brazilian Kaka headed an 80th minute winner as AC Milan beat Siena 2-1 on Saturday to extend their lead at the top of Serie A to 12 points.

Milan have 75 points with four games remaining while second placed AS Roma have 63 points and six matches left including Sunday's trip to Modena.

Ukrainian striker Andriy Shevchenko put Milan in front in the 26th minute with his 21st league goal of the season, reacting quickly to fire home after Rui Costa's shot had been parried by Siena keeper Marco Fortin.

Kaka then tested Fortin with a wicked bending drive from 25 metres as Milan, despite being without strikers Filippo Inzaghi and Jon Dahl Tomasson, caused plenty of problems for the Tuscan defence.

Siena drew level, though, seven minutes before the break after a handball inside the area from Shevchenko, who raised his arm in the wall at a free kick.

Referee Pierluigi Collina's decision allowed former Italy forward Enrico Chiesa to convert from the penalty spot.

Milan continued to enjoy more possession after the break, with Andrea Pirlo just wide with a cracking long-range shot and Shevchenko going close again after neat work from Rui Costa.

Gennaro Gattuso, back to his combative best in midfield for Milan, saw a 25 metre shot well saved by Fortin as the leaders searched for the winner.


Siena had midfielder Simone Vergassola sent off in the 79th minute for a second bookable offence following a foul on Kaka and a minute later Milan grabbed the winner.

Substitute striker Marco Borriello headed a corner goalwards and Kaka dived in to nod past Fortin and secure three vital points for Carlo Ancelotti's side.

"We worked hard and did everything for this win and we deserved it," Shevchenko told Italy's Sky Sport.

"These are three very important points that help take us nearer to our dream. It is a dream we think about every day," added the Ukrainian.

Struggling Lecce picked up a vital win thanks to a late goal from their prolific Uruguayan striker Ernesto Chevanton.

Danish midfielder Martin Jorgensen had put Udinese ahead in the 23rd minute from close range but Marco Cassetti equalised just before the break, sliding home at the back post to convert a fine Max Tonetto cross.

The game turned in first-half injury time when Udinese midfielder Giampiero Pinzi was sent off for a second yellow card after a lunging challenge on Chevanton.

The Uruguayan then grabbed the winner five minutes from the end for Lecce, firing home after a goalmouth scramble in which Udinese keeper Morgan De Sanctis appeared to have been fouled.

Lecce move up one place to 13th.

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