AC Milan were beaten 3-0 in Sunday’s derby at San Siro, with this proving to be the Rossoneri’s second successive league defeat after last Saturday’s loss to Spezia. It was a tough result to take against Inter, yet one that demands a fierce reaction at a key point of the season. Lautaro initially broke the deadlock during the opening stages of the first half on Sunday, while Handanovic then made a trio of superb saves at the start of the second. Inter’s second and third were subsequently dispatched just as the Rossoneri started to find their rhythm, with goals from Lautaro and Lukaku respectively. Ultimately, pride and courage weren’t enough for the Rossoneri to regain a foothold in the match, despite continued pressing and several chances late on. The team’s response will now prove crucial ahead of upcoming challenges. The first of which is a return leg against Red Star in the Europa League’s round of 32 at San Siro, while the second is a test against Roma next Sunday.
THE PHOTO GALLERY FROM AC MILAN V INTER
Inter took the lead after just five minutes on Sunday, with the goal stemming from Lukaku’s assist down the right. His first cross was blocked by Kjær before his second picked out Lautaro at the back post who headed the ball past Gigio. This opener served as a confidence boost for the Nerazzurri, while the Rossoneri only threatened for the first time in the 15th minute through Ibrahimović, whose back-heeled effort was saved by Handanovic. Inter were a threat on the counter throughout the match and Milan struggled to restrain the opposition’s attack. However, Milan’s patience and persistence led to an opportunity in the 33rd minute when a strike from Theo just snuck just wide of the post. Inter responded four minutes later through Martinez, who shot over from a rebound. The Rossoneri continued pressing high as the first half drew to a close, and it nearly paid off in the 44th minute when the ball fell to Çalhanoğlu; however, his pass couldn’t find Rebić. It was then just before half-time that Skriniar header a free-kick from Eriksen over the crossbar.
The second half started with a string of great chances for the Rossoneri, yet with Handanović somehow keeping out Milan on three separate occasions. Two of which were to halt headers from Ibra, while the third was a reflex save to prevent Tonali. Milan maintained their offensive pressure through Zlatan and Kessie, although it was Inter who soon found the back of the net, once again through Martinez. The away side’s second stemmed from a Nerazzurri counter-attack, as Eriksen found Perišić who subsequently pulled it back for Martinez to fire home. It was this that pushed Milan further forward in search of a goal, which left the home side vulnerable once again on the counter in the 63rd minute. Gigio was able to keep out Lukaku on this occasion, although he could no nothing to prevent the Belgian a few minutes later. Inter’s third was a fierce left-footed strike from the edge of the box, which all but sealed their win. Yet, the Rossoneri did not stop as the game neared its end, with chances for both Rebić and Meïte in the dying stages.
AC MILAN 0-3 INTER
AC MILAN (4-2-3-1): G. Donnarumma; Calabria, Kjær, Romagnoli, Hernández; Kessie, Tonali (67' Meïte); Saelemaekers (67' Leão), Çalhanoğlu, Rebić; Ibrahimović (75' Castillejo). A disp.: A. Donnarumma, Tătărușanu; Dalot, Gabbia, Kalulu, Tomori; Díaz, Hauge, Krunić. All.: Pioli.
INTER (3-5-2): Handanović; Škriniar, de Vrij, Bastoni; Hakimi (83' Young), Barella (83' Vidal), Brozović, Eriksen (79' Gagliardini), Perišić (79' Darmian); Lukaku, Martinez (79' Sanchez). A disp.: Padelli, Radu; Darmian, Kolarov, D'Ambrosio, Ranocchia; Vecino; Pinamonti. All.: Conte.
Referee: Doveri from Rome.
Goal: 5' Martinez (I), 57' Martinez (I), 65' Lukaku (I)
Booked: 12' Kjær (M), 22' Hakimi (I), 55' Saelemaekers (M)
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