Serie A, Week 5 Review: The World In Black And White

TURIN, ITALY - OCTOBER 02: Juventus FC players celebrate victory at the end the Serie A match between Juventus FC and AC Milan on October 2, 2011 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Marco Luzzani/Getty Images)

Udinese and Juventus top the table after last week's enthralling round of Serie A action, but the biggest news was a 3-0 crushing handed out by Napoli to Inter Milan at the San Siro.

We've got to face facts: the world really is black and white, with no room for shades of grey. The Serie A table is topped by the bianconeri, with Juventus and Udinese sharing first place, both on 11 points. Both teams won 2-0 at home on Sunday, the former over AC Milan, the latter beating Bologna. Neither were emphatic wins: Udinese allowed Bologna to come back into the match before Antonio Di Natale converted a penalty for his side's second, and Juventus needed 87 minutes to finally stop missing the target.

A few other talking points from this week in Serie A:

Cesena Are On the Board

Five weeks in and the Seahorses have finally recorded their first point, with a goalless draw against Chievo Verona. Cesena have scored just twice in five matches, meaning they'll have quite an uphill battle to notch a third consecutive season in the top division. Adrian Mutu, picked up in the summer and signifying what most thought was an intelligent transfer window by Cesena, missed his chance to give the club the lead when his penalty was saved by a diving Stefano Sorrentino. In fact, it was Sorrentino that kept the Cesena attack out of the net -- which is one bit of bright news for the bottom-dwellers

Atalanta Can Be Beaten

Had Atalanta not started the season with minus-6 points due to their role in match-fixing, they'd be sitting on ten points this week, equal to Napoli, Palermo, and Cagliari -- impressive for a newly promoted side. But Roma proved that La Dea are not immortal, recording a 3-1 win on Saturday. Part of the reason for Atalanta's loss was the fact that the home side managed to keep Maxi Moralez quiet, although Germán Denis did add to his scoring tally, with 4 goals in 5 matches.

Carve Time Out of Your Schedules For the Derby della Capitale

Yes, AS Roma managed a win last week, but it was this week's victory over Atalanta that truly demonstrated the potential of Luis Enrique's side. Jose Angel still looks terrified of getting booked, but is an impressive defensive addition. Bojan Krkic, in his second Roma start, has found his feet in Italian football, demonstrating with his first goal. Miralem Pjanic wants to get on the board, Pablo Osvaldo already has three goals, and Francesco Totti finally looks content. In short, Lazio should be nervous for the Rome derby in two weeks -- but their nerves might be tempered by their come-from-behind victory over Fiorentina at the weekend. That's their second comeback of the season, and considering the number of times they lost their cool and lost a lead last season, it will likely inspire confidence in the biancocelesti. And if that's not sufficient, Lazio can always just give the ball to Miroslav Klose and see what happens.

Massimo Allegri Needs to Spend Some Time With Football Manager

It was almost a walk in the park for Max Allegri last season, guiding AC Milan to the scudetto in his first season in charge. But things seem to be unraveling for the suave mister this season, with Allegri unable to adapt play to compensate for the number of injuries sustained by his squad. During the visit to Juventus on Sunday, the rossoneri proved good sports for the first 60 minutes, with both sides providing an entertaining duel. But then Allegri got scared and started to play for a draw -- a fatal mistake for a squad missing vital defensive members, particularly after Alessandro Nesta left the match injured. The Old Lady took advantage, with Claudio Marchisio scoring twice in the last 5+ minutes of play. The true sign of Milan's unraveling, however, was the red card awarded to Kevin-Prince Boateng, taking out his frustration on Giorgio Chiellini with a poor tackle. The title-holders are clearly not used to it been this difficult.

Squeeze a Little Azzurri on Your Color Palate

Italy may be colored in black and white at the moment, but don't discount Napoli. Sure, you can argue that a poor refereeing decision contributed to the azzurri win on Saturday, with Joel Obi being sent off on a second yellow and Napoli awarded a penalty kick for a foul outside the box. But it was poor defending from Inter Milan that allowed Hugo Campagnaro to score on the rebound, and the nerazzurri continued their meltdown. Even the lack of Edinson Cavani couldn't stop Napoli from scoring, with both Christian Maggio and Marek Hamsik adding to the total, giving Walter Mazzarri a 3-0 victory for his 50th birthday present. Last season, Napoli lacked conviction, falling to sides they believed better than them. But after drawing the Manchester City and beating both Milan sides, it's clear that this is a squad convinced they have a right to challenge for the title.

Week 5 Results

Cesena 0-0 Chievo
Fiorentina 1-2 Lazio
Inter 0-3 Napoli
Juventus 2-0 Milan
Lecce 0-2 Cagliari
Novara 3-3 Catania
Palermo 2-0 Siena
Parma 3-1 Genoa
Roma 3-1 Atalanta
Udinese 2-0 Bologna

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