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Napoli's Dries Mertens nets 4 in Serie A

dpa logodpa 18/12/2016 Alberto Cagliano

Dries Mertens scored four goals to take Napoli to a 5-3 win over Torino and lift his side to third in Serie A.

Dries Mertens has struck four times to help Napoli beat Torino 5-3 and go third in the Italian Serie A.

Napoli's third-straight win lifts them to within one point of second-placed Roma, who lost 1-0 at runaway leaders Juventus.

AC Milan slipped from third to fifth after a 0-0 home draw to Atalanta as Lazio also leapfrogged them by beating Fiorentina 3-1 in late action.

At Naples' San Paolo, Mertens turned in Jose Callejon's low cross from the right on 13 minutes and on 18 struck from the spot after Antonio Barreca floored him in the box.

Four minutes later he pounced to find the net after Joe Hart parried a Callejon drive and on 80 again beat the English goalkeeper with a spectacular lob from a tight angle for his 10th of the season.

Il Toro forward Andrea Belotti found the net in the 58th minute to go joint-top of the scorers chart with 12 goals alongside Roma's Edin Dzeko and Mauro Icardi of Inter Milan.

Vlad Chiriches scored for the hosts in the 70th from another Callejon feed but the guests kept things respectable with Luca Rossettini's pouncing on Pepe Reina's fumble on 76 and when substitute Iago Falque converted a penalty on 84.

"It was a great win, but we have to improve on many aspects," Mertens said.

"We conceded goals that we should have avoided. We played well up front but we made some mistakes in the end. But I feel fine in this team. We are working very well with our coach (Maurizio Sarri)."

Trailing Napoli on goal difference are fourth-place Lazio.

The Rome side saw Keita Balde net a drive and Lucas Biglia convert a penalty before Fiorentina's Josip Ilicic had a spot kick saved by Federico Marchetti.

The Florence guests then pulled one back from Mauro Zarate, a former-Lazio forward who came on for Ilicic, but Stefan Radu secured victory in the 90th minute.

In Genoa, a brace from Giovanni Simeone, the son of Atletico Madrid boss Diego, was not enough to avert a 4-3 defeat against struggling Palermo, who were down 3-1 with 25 minutes remaining and moved to second last ahead of Pescara.

Elsewhere, Chievo beat Sampdoria 2-1 and Bologna won 3-0 at Pescara who had Valerio Verre sent off on 15 minutes after falling one goal behind.

Cyril Thereau's brace sealed Udinese's 2-0 win over Crotone, whose goalkeeper Alex Cordaz was dismissed in the closing minutes.

Inter won 1-0 at Sassuolo earlier on Sunday in a fast-paced game.

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