MILAN (Reuters) - AC Milan went some way towards placating coach Gennaro Gattuso by winning 2-1 at Bologna in Serie A on Sunday to end a six-match winless run.
A furious Gattuso said his team “lacked soul” in a home defeat to bottom club Benevento last week and they responded to his stinging criticism by taking a 2-0 halftime lead through Hakan Calhanoglu and Giacomo Bonaventura.
Sebastien De Maio pulled one back for Roberto Donadoni’s team in the second half.
Milan stayed seventh with 57 points, one behind Atalanta who beat Genoa 3-1 with goals from Musa Barrow, Bryan Cristante and Josip Ilicic.
SPAL climbed out of the drop zone when they came from behind to win 3-1 away to Verona in a relegation dogfight.
Second-half goals from Felipe and Jasmin Kurtic stunned Verona, who are one off the bottom with 25 points and seven adrift of safety with three matches to play.
SPAL (32 points) moved one place above Verona’s neighbours Chievo (31), who lost 4-1 at AS Roma on Saturday and sacked coach Rolando Maran on Sunday morning.
SPAL are one point behind Cagliari after the Sardinians were thumped 4-1 at Sampdoria.
Marcello Trotta and Simy scored twice each as escape artists Crotone, who survived last season by winning their final game, beat Sassuolo 4-1 to move up to 15th.
Former France, Arsenal and Manchester City defender Bacary Sagna scored a 90th minute equaliser to give Benevento, already relegated, a 3-3 draw at home to Udinese, who themselves ended a run of 11 successive defeats.
The main game was in the evening with second-placed Napoli, four points behind leaders Juventus, visiting Fiorentina.
Writing by Brian Homewood in Bern, editing by Pritha Sarkar