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Soccer: Roma concede defeat after Juve extend lead

Champions beat Fiorentina to move 14 points clear

10 March, 12:50
Soccer: Roma concede defeat after Juve extend lead (ANSA) - Rome, March 10 - AS Roma coach Rudi Garcia has conceded defeat in the Serie A title race after his side lost 1-0 at Napoli on Sunday, enabling leaders Juventus to pull 14 points clear.

Roma played well in Naples, but failed to put away a series of good chances and were punished when Spaniard Jose Callejon' headed home Napoli's winner nine minutes from time.

Juventus, meanwhile, collected their 14th consecutive home win when they beat Fiorentina 1-0 thanks to a splendid diagonal strike from Ghanaian Kwadwo Asamoah. "In terms of arithmetic, it's not over, but in practical terms it is," said Frenchmen Garcia. "It's a big gap". Juve boss Antonio Conte also said he felt Juve's third consecutive league title since he took over the Turin giants was "50% mine". Roma, meanwhile, may have to focus increasingly on defending second place and automatic qualification for the group stage of next season's Champions League.

Sunday's defeat means Roma are just three points ahead of third-placed Napoli, although the team from the capital have a game in hand.

Garcia's woes were compounded by concerns about Dutch midfielder Kevin Strootman, who was carried off with a knee problem in the first half of Sunday's game in Naples.