MILAN – Italy midfielder Jorginho scored the only goal to put Napoli back top of Serie A on Sunday with a 1-0 win at Udinese, as a moment of madness saw Roma’s Daniele De Rossi sent off in a 1-1 draw at Genoa.
Joringho fired in off the rebound after missing a penalty on 33 minutes as new Udinese coach Massimo Oddo’s lost his first game in charge.
Napoli lacked inspiration after their Champions League exploits midweek and could thank goalkeeper Pepe Reina for keeping out a late Antonin Barak effort.
Maurizio Sarri’s side pull clear of Inter Milan who went top on Friday with Argentina striker Mauro Icardi bagging a brace in a 3-1 win at Cagliari.
“It’s a very important win, even though we didn’t play our best game. The Champions League saps your mental strength,” said Napoli’s Lorenzo Insigne.
Napoli have 38 points from 14 games with Inter two points behind. Champions Juventus are third along with Roma on 31 before Sunday evening’s game against Crotone.
Roma were held 1-1 at struggling Genoa after captain De Rossi was sent off in the second half after pulling Gianluca Lapadula’s shirt and slapping in him the face.
Stephen El Shaarawy had opened for Roma with a volley off an Alessandro Florenzi assist on 59 minutes but ten minutes later De Rossi saw red after consultation with the video assistant referee (VAR).
Lapadula slotted in the resulting penalty.
Roma coach Eusebio Di Francesco criticised 34-year-old De Rossi’s “great naivety”.
“He’s not a kid, especially when he’s the leader, we have been able to control the game without giving anything on front of our goal,” said Di Francesco.
“I still haven’t talked to him, but he was certainly sorry for what happened, the naivety is that nobody escapes VAR.
“These are two lost points, although I have to say played in the right way I’m happy with the performance apart from Daniele’s nonsense.”
Roma move joint third, but the stalemate ends their record of 12 straight Serie A away wins this season.
Lapadula’s penalty gave Genoa a much needed point as they sit fourth from bottom with ten points.
AC Milan were held to a goalless draw by Torino in the San Siro, with goalkeepers Gianluigi Donnarumma and Salvatore Sirigu pulling off some spectacular saves.
The match ended in controversy with a Patrick Cutrone goal ruled out as offside.
Milan are seventh equal on 20 points with Chievo and Bologna, a single point ahead of Torino, but have failed to score in their last four matches at the San Siro.