🇮🇹📝 Inter 1-2 Juventus: Champions turn the screw to go top of Serie A

🇮🇹📝 Inter 1-2 Juventus: Champions turn the screw to go top of Serie A

The Old Lady made a statement of intent last night as they put an end to Inter Milan's 100% record and went top of the Serie A table heading into the international break.

Here's how things went down on a night when Argentinian strikers came up trumps.

☄️ Breathless first half at San Siro

The first period of the Derby d'Italia between Inter and Juventus was a breathless, end-to-end affair. 

Argentina striker Paulo Dybala was included in Juve's starting XI at the expense of compatriot Gonzalo Higuain, and his inclusion was justified in the 4th minute as he rocketed Juve into the lead at San Siro after a smart pass from Bosnian Miralem Pjanic. His stinging effort from an acute angle had too much power for goalkeeper Samir Handanovic and the San Siro was silenced.

Portugal superstar Cristiano Ronaldo almost doubled the Italian Champions' lead on eight minutes with a ferocious effort from range that smashed off the face of the crossbar. 

Football is a game of fine margins and soon after Juve could have been 2-0 up, the scores were level on 18 minutes after Matthijs de Ligt handled in the area and VAR intervened to give Inter a penalty. Inter's Lautaro Martinez made no mistake from the spot with a cool, powerful finish that gave Wojciech Szczesny no chance in the Juve goal. It was a really strange piece of defending from de Ligt, who chose to throw his body at a cross instead of using his head. 1-1. 

Juve looked rattled until the half-hour mark as Inter's powerful running forwards Romelu Lukaku and especially the highly-impressive Lautaro Martinez threatened on the break.

On 41 minutes, Samir Handanovic denied Cristiano Ronaldo's fierce low left-footed drive. Less than a minute after the resulting corner, Ronaldo thought he had fired Juve into the lead with a neat left-footed shot but wild celebrations were cut short when the VAR ruled the goal out for offside after Dybala was adjudged to be beyond the last Inter man in the buildup. 

At the halftime whistle, players from both sides came together in a heated fashion as they made their way down the tunnel. 

🧮 Sarri's second half switches send Juve top

Whereas the first half was an evenly-contested, high-energy affair, the second period was dominated by Juventus. 

Uruguayan defensive rock Diego Godin was forced off early in the second half with an injury and although his replacement, 20-year-old Alessandro Bastoni acquitted himself well, Inter missed Godin's influence. 

The Nerazzurri had to chase shadows for much of the second half and Maurizio Sarri's three smart substitutions ultimately won Juventus the game. On the hour mark, Uruguayan central midfielder Rodrigo Bentancur replaced Sami Khedira and Gonzalo Higuain replaced the ineffective Federico Bernardeschi. Bentancur would supply Higuain with an inch-perfect pass that the Argentinian took and then emphatically buried in the back of Handanovic's net to put Juve 2-1 ahead with ten minutes on the clock. 

There was still time for Juve central men Emre Can and the impressive Miralem Pjanic to pick up bookings in an attempt to slow Inter down. Juve keeper Wojciech Szczesny smothered Matias Vecino brilliantly late on and the three points and top spot in Serie A now belong to Juve ahead of the international break.

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