Inter maintained their three-point lead at the top of Serie A with a 4-3 win at Empoli in last night’s rescheduled first round of Serie A matches.

Goals by Hernan Crespo and Javier Zanetti put Inter 2-0 up within 11 minnutes, but Empoli battled back into the match. Antonio Di Natale, Igli Vannucchi and Francesco Tavano scored the goals for the home side, who were always behind but produced a battling performance to ensure a tense finale for Hector Cuper’s men.

Inter’s city rivals Milan needed a Nestor Sensini deflection from a Rivaldo free-kick with just two minutes leftto see off Udinese and hold second place. Prolific striker Filippo Inzaghi then missed a penalty for Milan. The win keeps Milan in second, a point ahead of champions Juventus a point ahead of champions Juventus who won 1-0 at Piacenza, courtesy of a late winner from substitute Pavel Nedved.

Fourth-placed Lazio maintained their impressive run of form by beating Reggina 3-0 for their fourth successive away win this season. Goals from Stefano Fiore, Dejan Stankovic and Bernardo Corradi secured the pointsto keep Lazio in fourth spot.

Their rivals Roma were once again thannkful too skipper Francesco Totti, who scored the winner in a closely fought 2-1 win over Como. The goall was Totti’s eighth of the season, making him Serie A’s leading scorer.

Chievo’s comfortable 3-0 win over Perugia lifted them to fifth in Serie A, and Parma won an entertaining match with Brescia 4-3, Alberto Gilardino driving home the winner in the 74th minute. Robberto Baggio had earlier scored twice for Brescia. Stefan Appiah scored the other goal for Brescia as the visitors took the lead three times during the match, but defender Matteo Ferrari, Adrian Mutu, Emiliano Bonazzoli before Gilardino scored the winner for Parma.

At the other end of the table Torino lifted themselves off the bottom with a 2-1 win over Bologna, but the misery deepened for bottom club Atalanta who slid to their sixth defeat in eight matches, going down 3-1 at home to Modena.

Renzo Ulivieri won his first match since being appointed as coach of Torino with a 2-1 success over his former club Bologna. Atalanta remain stuck at the bottom after their 3-1 home defeatto newly promoted Modena.