Gonzalo Higuain scored twice, including his 100th Serie A goal, to give Juventus a 2-0 win at AC Milan on Saturday, putting them level on points at the top of Serie A and plunging their big-spending opponents back into crisis.
Champions Juventus joined Napoli on 28 points while Milan, who spent more than 200 million euros ($232 million) in the transfer market in the summer to try and revive their fortunes, were left languishing in eighth with 16.
Briefly boosted by a 4-1 win at Chievo on Wednesday, Milan have five wins, five defeats and one draw from their 11 games. Napoli host lowly Sassuolo on Sunday (1400 GMT).
Milan started well but quickly fell away and Juve’s growing pressure paid off in the 23rd minute when Paulo Dybala slipped the ball through to Higuain who drilled his shot past Gianluigi Donnarumma.
It was the Argentine’s 100th Serie A goal in 153 games for Juventus and Napoli, adding to the 107 goals he scored in La Liga for Real Madrid.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic is the only other player in the last 20 years to have score 100 goals or more in two of Europe’s big five leagues.
Nikola Kalinic had two good chances to level for Milan, just failing to connect with Fabio Borini’s low cross and seeing a close-range effort tipped on to the bar by Gianluigi Buffon.
Juve struck again in the 63rd minute with a superbly-worked goal as Kwadwo Asamoah surged through the Milan midfield and found Higuain with the help of a Dybala dummy. Higuain, in turn, slipped his marker and scored from 20 metres with a low shot which went in off the foot the post.