Injuries hit Inter as Milan eye title

MILAN - Brief news before this weekend's Serie A matches.

If Inter Milan fail to win at Cesena on Saturday and AC Milan defeat Bologna at home on Sunday, the Rossoneri will be champions because of their better head to head record if they finish level at the end of the season.

Defending champions Inter's hopes of taking the title race into another weekend have been hit by a suspension to goalkeeper Julio Cesar and injuries to Dejan Stankovic and Ivan Cordoba but midfielder Thiago Motta may return.

Milan, eight points clear, are bidding to wrap up their first scudetto since 2004 with three games to go and owner Silvio Berlusconi has no doubts.

"Now, it's done, the scudetto is ours," he said at a function for Milan midfielder Clarance Seedorf, who was receiving a special Dutch honour from the country's embassy in Rome.

Seedorf's contract is up at the end of the season and he has been linked in the media with a move to Brazil.

"I don't intend to quit," the 35-year-old would only say.

Third-placed Napoli still have an outside chance of the scudetto and have no injuries or suspensions for Saturday's visit of Genoa.

Juventus owner John Elkann predicted it will take three years for Juventus to become competitive again at the top of Serie A.

"The changes happening at Juve means it will take time to have a younger and more competitive squad," he told shareholders.

"Our prospects are linked to the great event this year - the opening of our new stadium - and a plan which will last until 2014. I expect a lot from Juve."

The seventh-placed side, who visit Lazio in fourth on Sunday, are still suffering the after-effects of their 2006 match-fixing demotion and a bungled transfer policy since.

Palermo's late bid for a Europa League place has been given a boost ahead of Sunday's game at Parma with highly rated Argentine playmaker Javier Pastore telling reporters he wants to stay in Sicily next season.

Sergio Campana, the head of the Italian players' association which threatened to strike twice this season after a row over contracts, has announced he will step down next month.


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