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Is a title challenge possible for Man Utd?

Manchester United
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By ESPN Staff

Palermo on the rise after sinking Viola

ROME, Dec 8 (Reuters) - Fabrizio Miccoli and Fabio Simplicio led Palermo to a 2-0 home win over Fiorentina to move up to seventh in Serie A on Saturday.

Miccoli struck in the 17th minute when he ran on to a defence-splitting flick from Brazilian strike partner Amauri and chipped the ball over Fiorentina keeper Sebastien Frey.

Alberto Fontana did well to keep Palermo ahead in the 41st, pushing away a powerful Riccardo Montolivo shot.

Fiorentina had to play the last 20 minutes with 10 men after Alessandro Gamberini pulled up injured with all their substitutes already on.

Palermo pressed forward with the extra man and Frey produced two fine saves to keep out Edinson Cavani before Brazilian midfielder Simplicio dribbled past two defenders to slot the second goal in the 81st.

Fiorentina stayed fifth with 24 points from 15 games, 10 points behind leaders Inter Milan who entertain Torino on Sunday.

Earlier, Lazio won 2-0 at home to Catania to boost morale ahead of Tuesday's Champions League clash at Real Madrid.

Striker Tommaso Rocchi headed Roma in front in the eighth minute and Macedonia forward Goran Pandev, on as a substitute, sealed the win in the 89th.

Catania striker Gionatha Spinesi was sent off in the 86th.

Lazio, 12th in Serie A on 17 points, need to win by two goals at Real to be sure of qualifying for the knockout stages of the Champions League.