- Associated Press - Thursday, February 4, 2016

MILAN (AP) - After finally getting its first win of the season, Hellas Verona is looking to make it two in a row.

Verona, which next faces Inter Milan, beat Atalanta 2-1 on Wednesday to earn its first win in 23 matches. Verona’s previous worst streak before this year was 13 matches without a win in 1989-90. The Serie A record is 28 matches without a win.

“Finally we got the win, which was deserved,” Verona coach Luigi Delneri said. “It was in the air for a while but wouldn’t come, wins give you confidence.

“Until we are mathematically down we will continue to believe. Now we have two very important matches against Inter and Lazio, there are still so many points available and many matches against our direct rivals. We got rid of an important taboo. We’re out of this nightmare.”

Verona is in last place, 10 points from safety and five behind the other two teams in the relegation zone: Carpi and Frosinone.

Carpi will visit Serie A leader Napoli and Frosinone hosts second-place Juventus.

Third-place Fiorentina plays on Saturday at Bologna and can cut the gap, temporarily at least, on Napoli to five points. In Saturday’s other match, Lazio visits Genoa.

On Sunday, it’s: AC Milan vs. Udinese; Sassuolo vs. Palermo; Torino vs. Chievo Verona; Atalanta vs. Empoli; and Roma vs. Sampdoria.

Here are some things to know about Serie A entering this weekend’s matches:



Inter got back to winning ways with a 1-0 win at Chievo on Wednesday.

Inter had started 2016 at the top of the league but slipped down the table following two draws and two defeats, including Sunday’s 3-0 loss to bitter rival AC Milan in the derby.

“We have to improve because, when we go in front, we relax a bit and we play with the ball lower down the pitch,” said Mauro Icardi, who scored Inter’s goal. “We need to do the opposite, push up.

“Our aim is the same as we had at the start of the season: Do well. Then, in May, we will see where we have finished, the matches we have won and the points we have earned.”



Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly thanked fans for their support after the team’s win at Lazio was suspended for four minutes in the second half because of racist chants.

“An important victory!” Koulibaly wrote in an instagram post. “But tonight I want to thank everyone for their messages of solidarity that I got. I also want to thank the Lazio players, but above all referee (Massimiliano) Irrati for his courage.

“I thank my teammates, the club and our fans who have been a great support against these awful chants! We’ll move forward and forza Napoli forever.”

Lazio, which was punished almost exactly a year ago for a similar offence, risks having to play two matches behind closed doors.



Stefan El Shaarawy’s return to form has come at precisely the right time for Roma.

Most people thought Roma was taking a gamble when it signed El Shaarawy from AC Milan on loan after the Italy forward’s disappointing loan spell at Monaco.

But the gamble is paying off as El Shaarawy has two goals in his two games for Roma, helping the club to its first wins of the year.

“The road is still very long. But a start like this is really something marvelous. Thanks to everyone for their support,” El Shaarawy wrote on Twitter.

El Shaarawy scored in wins against Frosinone and Sassuolo. It was the first time Roma had won two straight league matches since October.

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