Coppa Italia, Round Of 16: Lazio, Roma, Chievo And Napoli Through To Quarterfinals

Three Coppa Italia matches take place January 10-12, while AC Milan and Inter play January 18-19. Who will join Juventus and Siena in the quarterfinals?

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Napoli Vs. Cesena, 2012 Coppa Italia: The Partenopei Advance In Controversial Fashion

Napoli are through to the quarterfinals of the Coppa Italia, where they will face the winner of next week's Inter Milan - Genoa matchup, but they're not through without controversy. The match-winning goal in a 2-1 victory over Cesena came in the 86th minute from Goran Pandev, but it's not exactly clear whether or not his shot ever crossed the line.

Cesena put themselves in front early, with Stefan Popescu scoring the opener in the 20th minute. Eduardo Vargas, making his debut for Napoli, tried to cut out a pass towards Popescu but actually deflected it into a better path. Camilo Zuniga was caught napping and Popescu took his clear shot on goal, beating goalkeeper Antonio Rosati.

Napoli's equalizer came in the 65th minute through Edinson Cavani. Goran Pandev, who came on for Vargas at halftime, created the chance with a hard free kick that Nicola Ravaglia could only parry away. His save fell right into the path of Cavani, who hit a composed close-range finish to even up the scoring.

The winner came in similar fashion to the equalizer, off of a hard long-range effort from Pandev. The difference between that goal and the winner was that Ravaglia reacted slowly, just barely getting his hand to the ball as it was right around the goal line. The ball at least partially crossed the line before it was batted out, and the referee gave the goal after his linesman indicated that the ball had crossed the line.

On replay, it's not 100 percent clear whether or not the ball went over. It's close enough that the linesman should probably be given the benefit of the doubt, but it was a hard way to lose for Cesena, who looked very good for the first 60 minutes before falling apart.


Coppa Italia 2012, Round Of 16: AS Roma, Chievo Verona Advance With Wins

Roma are unsurprisingly through to the quarterfinals of Coppa Italia after fielding a strong side against Fiorentina, while Chievo Verona pulled off a great victory in Fruili to knock Udinese out of the competition. Roma's win sets up a fantastic quarterfinal draw, while Chievo will be favored to advance to the semifinals.

Roma 3-0 Fiorentina

The first half ended scoreless, but the second half was all Roma. A few of the Giallorossi's top players were rested, but Francesco Totti and Erik Lamela both went 90 minutes. The latter was on top of his game, netting in the 53rd and 66th minutes to put his team up 2-0. Fabio Borini sealed the win for Roma with his 75th minute strike. They'll face Juventus in what will likely be the most appealing quarterfinal matchup.

Udinese 1-2 Chievo

The Zebrette did not play their strongest team, but it would be a stretch to call the side weak. Antonio Di Natale and Samir Handanovic were joined in the team by a group of defenders who play regularly in Serie A, though the midfield did not have any first choice players. Paolo Sammarco struck first for Chievo in the 8th minute, and they did their best to hold onto that lead from there. Di Natale equalized in the 84th minute, but Udinese shockingly gave the match away in stoppage time when Cyril Thereau netted the winner. The Flying Donkeys will host Siena in the next round.


Lazio Vs. Hellas Verona, 2012 Coppa Italia: Biancocelesti Get Late Winner

Lazio played a combination first team and reserve team in their Coppa Italia match against Serie B side Hellas Verona, and they almost paid for it. After jumping out to a 2-0 lead, Lazio fell asleep and let their visitors back into the game with two second half goals. Eventually, they were rescued by their star Hernanes, one of the only first choice players to go 90 minutes in the game, as they squeaked out a 3-2 victory.

Veteran defender Andre Dias scored for Lazio just before the stroke of halftime to give his team an advantage going into the locker room, and Tommaso Rocci netted in the 57th minute to extend their cushion. Emanuele Berrettoni surprisingly hit back just four minutes later with a 61st minute goal, then young Marco D'Alessandro stunned everyone by equalizing in the 74th.

Hernanes would come to the rescue, however, scoring a massive stoppage time goal to give Lazio the 3-2 win. They will face the winner of the match between AC Milan and Novara in the quarterfinals.

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