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AC Milan pull away atop Serie A on Zlatan goal

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AC Milan pull away atop Serie A on Zlatan goal
07:47 CET+01:00
AC Milan went six points clear at the top of Serie A on Sunday after earning its 10th win in 12 league games with a 3-0 romp over Bologna, sealed by a goal from Swedish striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Goals from Kevin-Prince Boateng, Robinho and Ibrahimovic; eased Milan to a comfortable victory, which also guarantees top spot in a week's time when Serie A shuts down for its winter break.

Ibrahimovic said the 12.30pm kick-off time had presented a new challenge.

"We won 3-0, it was a hard game. It's the first time we've played at midday, it wasn't easy but we won and that's the most important thing," he said.

Although he doesn't want to talk about the title just yet, Ibrahimovic; said his team is aiming to win silverware this season.

"Everything's possible. We're in the running for all the trophies [league, cup and Champions League]. We have to keep going, don't relax, there's still lots of games left so we'll talk about the title another time," he cautioned.

Milan manager Massimiliano Allegri paid tribute to Ibrahimovic.

"It was truly difficult to play against him [on Sunday], you always expect great things from him," said Allegri.

Separately, Bologna counterpart Alberto Malesani described him as the difference between the teams.

"Ibrahimovic made the difference, otherwise I don't think we played badly. It's no coincidence that wherever he (Ibrahimovic) plays they win the title. He's untouchable, unmarkable and with Robinho, they're the best attacking partnership in Serie A," added Malesani.

With Ghanaian midfielder Boateng playing in the holding role between midfield and attack, Milan dominated the game completely.

Bologna had the first chance with a speculative effort from distance from Uruguay's Gastón Ramírez that Italy's Christian Abbiati tipped around the post.

Thereafter, it was all Milan and they went ahead on nine minutes as Ibrahimovic; hit an inswinging cross from the left and Boateng burst into the box between two defenders to stretch out his right leg and prod the ball home from six yards.

The second came on 35 minutes as Brazilian striker Robinho shot between Italian goalkeeper Emiliano Viviano's legs after a Boateng flick slipped him in on goal.

It could have been worse for Bologna as Robinho then played in Ibrahimovic, who also shot between Viviano's legs, but this time the ball clipped one of them and diverted wide.

Deep into injury time, hesitancy in the Bologna defence allowed Italy's Gianluca Zambrotta to win the ball in the box and fire a shot off the crossbar.

Abbiati almost gifted Bologna a goal when he ran out wide to prevent a corner, but was then dispossessed outside his box before he could clear his lines only for Ramírez's snap-shot to hit the side-netting.

The game was over on the hour mark as Italy's Andrea Pirlo's inch-perfect pass picked out Ibrahimovic, with the striker taking care of the rest.

There was still time for Milan to concede what was the first penalty against them this season when Italian striker Marco Di Vaio flung himself to the ground after slight contact with Dutch substitute Clarence Seedorf. However, Abbiati dived to his right to stop Di Vaio's spot-kick.

Ibrahimovic has won title over the last seven consecutive years with every team that he has played, although two of those with Juventus were subsequently rescinded.

He won his second Dutch title with Ajax in 2004 two years after his first. Following the two with Juve, he won three scudetto crowns in a row with Inter and the Spanish La Liga with Barcelona last season.

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