Milan beat city rival Inter Milan, 2-1, in the previous round. It was now third in the standings heading into its game against Sampdoria. Inter was leading by two points. Inter was held 1-1 at Napoli Saturday.
In the eighth minute, Milan goalkeeper Mike Maignan scored the winning goal for Rafael Leao. To feed Leao, the France international sent a long kick outside of his penalty area. He controlled the ball on Leao's left flank and passed Bartosz Bereszynski, beating Sampdoria goalkeeper Wladimiro Facione.
This was the Portugal forward's 10th goal in the season, his 100th appearance for Rossoneri.
Facone missed Olivier Giroud's second-half goal from close range, which was scored by Striker Olivier Giroud.
Milan leads the table with 55 points. Inter is second, with Napoli a point behind. Inter holds a one-game advantage over both teams.
Coach Stefano Pioli was pleased with Milan's three victories in a week, which included a 4-0 win over Lazio in Coppa Italia.
It has been a perfect week. Pioli stated that there were difficult and delicate games this week, so winning all three was certainly a great sign," Pioli said to Sky Sport Italia. We know we have a long road ahead of us but we are determined to continue our journey.
Danilo scored a stoppage time equalizer for Juventus, drawing 1-1 at Atalanta. This allowed them to retain fourth place. The Brazilian swung in from a corner by Paulo Dybala.
Atalanta, fifth in the table, was very close to winning a victory over Juventus after a defeat to Cagliari at home. In Bergamo, substitute Ruslan Malinovskyi was able to give the hosts a late lead. After receiving a backheel from a free kick, Malinovskyi shot a long-distance goal into the top corner of the Bergamo goal in the 76th minute. Wojciech Zczesny was unable to stop the goal.
Marco Sportiello saved several opportunities for Juventus' new striker Dusan Velahovic in an entertaining match.
Atalanta is two points behind Juventus at 46 points.
Bryan Cristante scored an injury-time equalizer for Roma to salvage a draw at 10-man Sassuolo. Roma won in the first half thanks to Tammy Abraham's penalty goal. Sassuolo won the second half thanks to a goal by Chris Smalling. Hamed Junior Traore scored an own-goal, putting the hosts ahead in the third.
After Gian Marco Ferrari's second yellow card, Sassuolo had been reduced to 10 men five minutes later.
Roma remains seventh, Sassuolo is 12th.
Fabio Depaoli and Antonin Barak along with Gianluca Caprari, Gianluca Caprari, and Adrien Tameze scored for Verona, which resoundingly beat Udinese 4-0 to cement its ninth-place finish.
Late substitute Leonardo Pavoletti secured a draw at Empoli of 1-1 for Cagliari. This was yet another surprise result for 18th-place Cagliari. They stunned Atalanta by 2-1 in Bergamo last week.
Genoa and Salernitana were drawn 1-1 in a match between the bottom two clubs.