Serie A: Romelu Lukaku Double Helps Inter Milan Hold Stress On Leaders AC Milan
Romelu Lukaku scored a second-half double as Inter Milan stored the stress on Serie A leaders AC Milan with a 4-Zero win over Benevento on Saturday. Antonio Conte’s Inter sit two factors behind their metropolis rivals, who beat Bologna 2-1 earlier on Saturday. A Riccardo Improta personal objective put the hosts forward early on towards 11th-placed Benevento on the San Siro. Lautaro Martinez scored 12 minutes after the break earlier than Lukaku added two extra. Champions Juventus moved into third, seven factors off prime spot with a recreation in hand, after a 2-Zero win over Sampdoria.
Milan bounced again after losses to Atalanta within the league and to Inter within the Italian Cup on Tuesday, a recreation wherein Zlatan Ibrahimovic was despatched off.
“It was a powerful response from the staff. A victory that offers us confidence on the finish of a troublesome week,” mentioned Milan coach Stefano Pioli.
The midweek Milan derby was overshadowed by a conflict between Ibrahimovic and former Manchester United teammate Lukaku.
Ibrahimovic on Saturday drew a clean for a second straight league recreation for the primary time this season.
Bologna goalkeeper Lukasz Skorupski made a superb double save from the Swede early on.
The guests had been awarded a penalty when Mitchell Dijks introduced down Rafael Leao, with Ibrahimovic stepping as much as take it.
However the 39-year-old’s poor document from the spot continued along with his fourth penalty miss in all competitions this season.
Fortunately, Ante Rebic was available to slip within the rebound after Skorupski’s save.
Franck Kessie took Milan’s second penalty 10 minutes after the break following an Adama Soumaoro handball.
The Ivorian made no mistake, planting the ball into the center of the online.
“The penalty taker is Ibra, it is as much as him, when he would not really feel like taking it, I kick,” mentioned Kessie.
Substitute Andrea Poli pulled a objective again for 13th-placed Bologna towards his former membership with 9 minutes to go.
Eriksen makes mark once more
In Milan, Inter’s Christian Eriksen, who scored a late winner within the Cup derby, arrange the primary objective within the seventh minute when his free-kick was became his personal web by Improta.
Martinez ended his six-match objective drought on 57 minutes with a left-footed strike into the underside nook.
Achraf Hakimi had a objective dominated out for offside, however seconds later Benevento goalkeeper Lorenzo Montipo’s dreadful go was intercepted by Martinez, who arrange Lukaku to attain.
Substitute Alexis Sanchez served up the fourth for Lukaku with 12 minutes to go, bringing the striker’s tally to 14 league objectives this season, one fewer than Serie A number one scorer Ronaldo.
“(Eriksen) is adapting very properly to this new function,” mentioned Inter assistant coach Cristian Stellini, standing in for Conte who’s serving a two-match ban.
“He is working arduous, now he has the chance to show his price.”
In Genoa, Ronaldo failed to attain for the third consecutive league recreation, however Juventus continued their climb up the desk.
The Portuguese striker has been criticised for breaking coronavirus guidelines with a go to to a mountain resort for his girlfriend’s birthday.
“Ronaldo all the time does his bit for the staff and it is not an issue if he would not rating,” mentioned Juventus coach Andrea Pirlo.
Federico Chiesa opened the scoring on 20 minutes after a transfer involving all three Juventus forwards.
Alvaro Morata performed a one-two with Ronaldo, earlier than the Spaniard’s low cross was slotted in by Chiesa.
Claudio Ranieri’s Sampdoria got here near an equaliser, with Juventus goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny denying Fabio Quagliarella a objective towards his former membership on the eve of his 38th birthday.
Morata had a objective dominated out for offside on 56 minutes for Juve, who needed to wait till harm time to attain a second.
Ronaldo’s cross-field go discovered the run of Juan Cuadrado who laid it on a plate for Ramsey to faucet in his second league objective of the season.
“The perspective is correct, we end a constructive January wherein we’ve grown lots, even when we may have killed off the sport sooner,” mentioned Juventus centre-back Giorgio Chiellini.
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