Young gun Hojlund fires Atalanta past Monza and two points clear

MILAN: Rasmus Hojlund helped move Atalanta two points clear at the top of Serie A on Monday after opening his account for the club in a 2-0 stroll against bottom side Monza. Dane Hojlund, 19, has been compared to Manchester City star Erling Haaland and began to repay the 17 million euro fee paid to Sturm Graz late last month by netting 56 minutes into his first start from Ademola Lookman’s low cross.

Nigeria international Lookman then forced in the away side’s second via a big deflection off Marlon Santos eight minutes later to put Gian Piero Gasperini’s side, who had been top at the start of this round of matches, on 13 points. They are on their own at the summit for the first time since 1964 thanks to Roma being thrashed 4-0 by Udinese on Sunday night. Unbeaten Atalanta lead Napoli and champions AC Milan and do not have any European football on their schedule after finishing eighth last season.

Monza have had a dismal start to their first ever Serie A season despite a summer spending spree and remain on zero points after their first five games in Italy’s top flight. Torino are three points behind Atalanta thanks to Nikola Vlasic’s strike which earned them a 1-0 home win over promoted Lecce. Vlasic netted the winner in the 40th minute to move Torino a point above their local rivals Juventus. Salernitana, who escaped relegation thanks to a miracle run at the end of last season, are 10th after their 2-2 draw with Empoli. – AFP

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