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Sampdoria shrugs off rights row to grab vital win against Lecce

Sampdoria shrugs off rights row to grab vital win against Lecce

Sampdoria put its current row over TV rights behind it to beat Lecce 3-0 in the Italian league on Saturday.

Aimo Diana scored twice while Fabio Bazzani grabbed the third as Sampdoria went seventh in the table to keep alive its hopes of UEFA Cup football next season.

The win was a welcome relief after Friday's off-pitch drama which had seen the president of Sampdoria threatening to boycott the championship over a row over football television rights in Italy.

Riccardo Garrone said his team would either not play against the three big teams, Juventus, AC Milan and Inter Milan, or would send out a youth team instead.

On Saturday, Sampdoria opened the scoring in the 21st minute when Andrea Gasbarroni's corner kick was touched on by Corrado Colombo for Diana to tap-in.

The visitor doubled its tally on the stroke of halftime from another corner kick, but this time Diana's set-piece went in with the aid of a deflection off striker Marco Delvecchio.

It was 3-0 early in the second half as Colombo's through ball found Bazzani who put the seal on the win to leave Lecce second from bottom of the table.

In Saturday's other match, the Sicilian derby between Messina or Palermo ended in a goalless draw.

Valencia closes gap

Valencia closed the gap on the leading pair in the Spanish first division with an efficient 2-0 win over second-placed Osasuna on Saturday.

Champion twice in the last four years, Valencia showed some of the style of the Rafa Benitez-era to beat this season's surprise package, although the visitor from Pamplona never threw in the towel.

Osasuna emains in second despite the defeat with 39 points from 19 games but is now just three in front of Valencia.

After squandering two chances, Valencia's Mario Regueiro made it third time lucky when he fired home at an angle from just inside the area a minute into injury time at the end of the first half.

Regueiro had come on as substitute after just 10 minutes when Spanish international Vicente Rodriguez twisted his right ankle while trying to shoot and was stretchered off in agony.

Valencia then went two ahead shortly after the break when David Villa was left in the clear to head home a Miguel Angel Angulo cross from wide out on the right.

However, arguably the star of the show was Valencia's former Spanish international goalkeeper Santiago Canizares, who pulled off four spectacular saves to keep a clean sheet.

Meanwhile, changing coach during the week didn't help Atletico Madrid as it went down 1-0 at struggling Real Betis.

Atletico's former reserve team coach Pepe Murcia was no more successful than his more illustrious predecessor Carlos Bianchi, who was sacked on Thursday, at finding a winning formula.

A 29th minute goal from 'Capi' Capitan grabbed three points for Betis in an evenly matched game and the Spanish capital's second side has now gone eight league matches without a win.

Capi's powerful right foot shot from just outside the area found the net after a horrendous error by Atletico defender Luis Perea, who sent the ball to the feet of Betis' new signing Robert.

Atletico had several good chances to equalize, with Spain star Fernando Torres going close in both halves.

The win will give Betis, a Champions League contender this season, some respite from their relegation worries, having started the weekend third from bottom.

Updated : 2021-07-29 06:37 GMT+08:00