Milan clinched their first Italian Serie A title in 11 years after earning a 3-0 final-day victory at Sassuolo, with a double from Olivier Giroud and one from Franck Kessié sealing the Scudetto in style.
Stefano Pioli’s side came into the final round of fixtures knowing a point would be enough for them to finish top ahead of rivals Internazionale, but after Giroud squeezed the ball home in the 17th minute, a 19th Serie A title never looked in doubt.
Giroud stabbed home a second in the 32nd minute after further fine work from Rafael Leão to put Pioli’s men on course for the trophy. There was no relenting from Milan as Kessié slotted home a third four minutes later to effectively put the game, and title race, to bed before half-time.
Mario Balotelli gave fans a reminder of his talent when he scored five goals for Adana Demirspor on the final day of the Turkish Super Lig season. The striker got his first goal in the 33rd minute and his fifth in the 70th in a 7-0 drubbing of relegated Goztepe.
The five-goal haul – which had a magical strike that included multiple stepovers before he found the net with a rabona – allowed him to shoot up the league’s scoring charts. The 31-year-old finished with 18 goals, two shy of the top scorer, Umut Bozok of Kasimpasa.
Once Italy’s main striker and the top scorer at Euro 2012, Balotelli seemed to have lost his way when he played last season in Serie B with Monza before joining promoted Demirspor.
Having last played for Italy in 2018, he was called up for a training camp this year, reviving hopes he would play for the Azzurri again. But Roberto Mancini, who coached him at Internazionale and Manchester City, did not name him in the World Cup playoffs squad as Italy failed to qualify. Reuters
After the break, it was party time in Emilia-Romagna with thousands of Milan fans, who had clearly purchased tickets among the home supporters, celebrating throughout the half as their side never looked in any danger of being pegged back.
The final whistle was greeted with wild scenes of celebration. But victory was soured somewhat for the Milan coach, Stefano Pioli, when his winners’ medal was reportedly stolen. “They snatched my medal: if you can make an appeal I thank you, it is the only one I have,” said Pioli, according to La Repubblica.
🍾 @Ibra_official #MILANSCUDETTO #SerieATIM💎 #WeAreCalcio pic.twitter.com/PLQvtzN0Q8
Milan’s win meant that Internazionale’s 3-0 win over Sampdoria was academic, with all three goals coming in the second half. Nicolò Barella found Ivan Perisic in the box and the Croatian opened the scoring after 49 minutes, to little celebration from fans who knew their city rivals were already 3-0 up in their match.
The visitors then scored twice in two minutes through Joaquín Correa as the Argentine forward showcased a deft touch for Inter’s second before outmuscling the defence on a solo run to score a third.
Napoli, who were in the title race for most of the season but ended up in third place, won 3-0 at Spezia as forward Lorenzo Insigne played his last game for the club.
At the bottom, Salernitana completed their great escape despite being thrashed 4-0 by Udinese, after Cagliari failed to win at already-relegated Venezia.
The promoted side had been rock-bottom a month ago, but a run of seven matches unbeaten out of nowhere meant they could secure survival with a win over Udinese. Gerard Deulofeu opened the scoring as the visitors burst their hosts’ bubble, leading 3-0 at half-time with Roberto Pererya’s fine solo effort making it four.
By that time, the home fans on the Amalfi coast had turned to their phones, following updates from Venice where a Cagliari goal would have meant relegation for Salernitana. The breakthrough never came despite numerous chances for the visitors, who drop into Serie B along with their opponents and Genoa.