Goals galore in few matches in a very exciting Serie A weekend, which culminated in a riveting Derby della Madonnina that easily took home the coveted shout-out.
Milan approached the game looking to carry on the momentum that led them to snatching the third position away from the crosstown rivals with five straight wins. Inter prevailed in the last two Serie A matches, but just endured a bitter elimination from Europa League by the hands of Eintracht Frankfurt.
Gennaro Gattuso confirmed his go-to XI, with Davide Calabria, Tiemoué Bakayoko and Hakan Calhanoglu returning to the lineup after being rested last week. Luciano Spalletti recovered Marcelo Brozovic after last week’s little scare and partnered him with Roberto Gagliardini, while Matias Vecino deputized for Radja Nainggolan as pseudo and disruptive no.10.
The decision paid off right away as after just three minutes, Ivan Perisic shook free down the right flank, lofted a high cross towards the far post, Lautaro Martinez sent it back towards the middle and Vecino tucked it home with a flying deflection beating Alessio Romagnoli to the punch.
The Rossoneri tried to answer right away and Lucas Paquetà and Hakan Calhanoglu challenged Samir Handanovic with solid strikes from distance, but the goalkeeper saved on both. Vecino almost doubled the lead after 30 minutes, sneaking between defenders on a square ball by Perisic, but he skied it from excellent position.
Samu Castillejo replaced Paquetà at half time due to a muscular issue and Calhanoglu moved to the midfield. The Beneamata continued to produce and Gianluigi Donnarumma batted away a threatening shot from distance by Gagliardini. A little later, on an articulate corner kick, Matteo Politano found Stefan De Vrij with an accurate cross and the defender bagged it with a spectacular header.
With their back against the wall, the Rossoneri broke through, with Bakayoko scoring a superb header of his own on a long free kick by Calhanoglu. Inter kept coming and Donnarumma pulled out of the top drawer a mistaken deflection by a teammate.
At the 67th minute, Politano waltzed through defenders on the edge of the box and was slightly tackled by Castillejo, but it was enough to award a penalty, which Martinez drained. However, the Devil again stayed in the game, quickly cutting the lead with Mateo Musacchio, who bundled it home after a couple of crazy ricochets in the box on a corner kick.
Milan laid siege in the final minutes, helped by the insertions of Patrick Cutrone and Andrea Conti. Krzysztof Piatek tried to knock it on goal with an otherworldly back heel flick, but that was about the only time he was dangerous throughout the game.
Handanovic got in the way of a Samu Castillejo header on the far post, while Danilo D’Ambrosio blocked a Patrick Cutrone point-blank shot in the stoppage time. Inter resisted and secured a massive win, returning in the third spot.
Martinez paced everybody in the fantasy game with his six points for his goal and assist, followed by Bakayoko with four, while De Vrij and Vecino got three because they were also booked and Musacchio just two because of the goals they conceded. Mattia Politano earned two with his dish.
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