Juventus beat Bologna, stretch lead in Serie A

Rome: Juventus stretched their lead to 12 points in Italian football league Serie A after beating Bologna 2-0 at the Stadio Dall`Ara.

The hosts` defence succumbed after the break Saturday and Mirko Vucinic and Claudio Marchisio scored to earn the Bianconeri all three points to extend their advantage at the top of the table over Napoli and AC Milan, who play Atalanta and Pescara respectively Sunday, reports Xinhua.

Bologna had their moments in the first-half but were unable to build on a win over Inter Milan from last weekend.

Juve took the lead in the 62nd minute when Marchisio played the ball to the feet of Vucinic on the edge of the area and he turned to shoot low past Bologna goalkeeper Curci. Vucinic then returned the favour in the 74th minute to set up for Marchisio.

"We wanted to win against a team that was in great shape. A defeat today would have sent a positive signal to our opponents in the race but we earned the three points and I am happy with the performance," said Juventus head coach Antonio Conte.

"Juventus, statistically, has the strongest defence and most prolific attack. We play good football and I am proud of this team."

His Bologna counterpart Stefano Pioli said Juventus deserved the win.

"Juve played well and proved they are a great team. We tried to keep up the tempo but had hoped to create more scoring opportunities and fell away after the break. Juve created little until the goal," he said.

Catania beat Udinese 3-1 at the Stadio Massimino looking to jump on the train for a place in Europe next season.

With nine games to go this season, the win lifted Catania within two points of the top five, giving the Sicilians a realistic hope of taking a place in the Europa League next season.