Inter attacks Roma: Thuram scores again and Inzaghi regains the top spot. Napoli catches up with Milan and Giroud (2-2)


By John

NET: 36′ st Thuram.
INTER (3-5-2): Summer 6.5; Pavard 6.5 (1st st Darmian 6.5), Acerbi 7, Bastoni 7; Dumfries 7 (40′ st De Vrij sv), Barella 6.5, Calhanoglu 6.5 (30′ st Asllani 6), Mkhitaryan 6.5 (30′ st Asllani 6), Dimarco 7 (38′ st Carlos Augusto sv); Thuram 7, Lautaro 6. On the bench: Di Gennaro, Audero, Bisseck, Sensi, Klaassen, Agoume, Sanchez. Coach: Inzaghi 6.5.
ROME (3-5-2): Rui Patricio 6; Mancini 5.5, Llorente 5, Ndicka 5.5; Kristensen 4.5, Cristante 6, Paredes 5.5 (44′ st Azmoun sv), Bove 6 (39′ st Aouar sv), Zalewski 5.5 (30′ st Celik sv); Lukaku 5, El Shaarawy 6 (39′ st Belotti sv). On the bench: Boer, Svilar, Karsdorp, Pagano, Pisilli, Cherubini, D’Alessio, Joao Costa. Coach: Mourinho (suspended, Foti on the bench) 5.
REFEREE: Maresca of Naples 6.5.
NOTE: peaceful evening, pitch in good condition. Booked: Mancini, Pavard, Ndicka, Paredes, Calhanoglu, Bastoni, Cristante. Corners: 8-0. Recovery time: 3′; 5′.
Milan – A goal from Thuram at the end of the match gave Inter a huge success in the big match of the tenth matchday against Roma. At San Siro it ended 1-0 thanks to the Frenchman’s blaze in the 81st minute, on the long-awaited day of Lukaku’s great return in front of his former fans. Many boos were promised and rained down on the Belgian, who together with his teammates gave rise to a negative and too submissive performance, in the presence of a team, that of Inzaghi, who tried to win it from the first minutes.
The Nerazzurri thus return to the top of the table with 25 points, while the men of the other ex, Mourinho, lose again after three victories in a row, remaining stuck at 14 points. The first half of the game is entirely exclusively Nerazzurri branded: the The home team plays the game on a tactical level, building several opportunities, while the visiting team does nothing but try to limit their opponents’ offensive initiatives and wait for the right spaces to restart.
Inter’s first great chance came already in the 6th minute, when Calhanoglu smashed the crossbar with a nice right-footed shot from the edge, while in the quarter of an hour a great foot reflex from Rui Patricio was needed to prevent Thuram from scoring the opening goal. A minute later Dimarco hurls a poisonous left winger just wide.
The Romans suffer and are unable to build anything in the local half, so much so that at half-time the total shots statistic speaks of a clear 11-0. In the second half the game script didn’t change and, after a few minutes, Thuram had another good header opportunity which he didn’t take advantage of after a spurt from Acerbi.
The match seemed to flatten out as the clock ticked down and only in the 66th minute did Roma have their first big chance: Zalewski put it in the center from the left, Cristante took time from Bastoni and with a peremptory aerial cut, he challenged Sommer in a dive. Once the fear was over, Inter began to press again and in the 81st minute they deservedly took the lead thanks to Thuram’s strike, left too free to strike Dimarco’s low cross into the area. At the stroke of 90′ the Nerazzurri also came close to doubling their lead with new substitute Carlos Augusto, who was unlucky to hit Inter’s second crossbar of the evening with a great right-footed shot from outside.

22′ pt Giroud, 31′ pt Giroud; 5′ st Politano, 18′ st Raspadori.
NAPLES (4-3-3): Meret 6; Di Lorenzo 6, Rrahmani 5 (1′ st Ostigard 6.5), Natan 5, Mario Rui 5 (1′ st Olivera 6.5); Elmas 5 (1′ st Simeone 6), Lobotka 6, Zielinski 6.5 (32′ st Anguissa sv); Politano 7 (38′ st Zanoli sv), Raspadori 7, Kvaratskhelia 6.5. On the bench: Gollini, Contini, D’Avino, Cajuste, Gaetano, Demme, Zerbin, Lindstrom. Coach: Garcia 6.5.
MILAN (4-3-3): Maignan 5; Calabria 6.5, Kalulu sv (19′ pt Pellegrino 5, 42′ st Florenzi sv), Tomori 6.5, Hernandez 5.5; Musah 6, Krunic 6, Reijnders 5.5; Pulisic 6.5 (1′ st Romero 5.5), Giroud 7.5 (36′ st Jovic sv), Leao 6 (36′ st Okafor sv). On the bench: Mirante, Nava, Bartesaghi, Adli, Pobega, Okafor, Jovic. Coach: Pioli 5.5.
REFEREE: Orsato di Schio 6.
NOTE: clear skies, pitch in good condition. Booked: Reijnders, Romero, Di Lorenzo, Musah, Zanoli. Expelled: Natan, in the 44th minute, for a double yellow card. Corners: 6-4. Recovery time: 5′; 4′.
The other big match of the tenth day of Serie A between Napoli and Milan ends in a draw. TOMaradona didn’t go beyond a splendid 2-2, characterized by the beautiful Neapolitan comeback against the Rossoneri after Giroud’s brace in the first half. Politano and Raspadori responded in the second half: Pioli’s team thus lost the chance to regain second place in the standings, moving to -1 behind Juve (23) but slipping to -3 behind leaders Inter (25); instead Garcia’s men, left with 10 men in the last minutes (red to Natan), rise to 18 points in fourth place. The first big chance of the match is for the Rossoneri and arrives less than two minutes before kick-off, with Giroud trying to finish on goal after a fouled shot from Musah, but Rrahmani is providential in saving. However, it will be the Frenchman himself, in the 22nd minute, who scores the visitors’ 1-0 thanks to a great header from a Pulisic cross, deflected but not saved by Meret. The Neapolitans would have conceded the ball for the equalizer five turns later, but Politano wasted it by putting it on the outside of the net after an assist from Kvaratskhelia. Milan saved themselves and did not forgive, because on the other side it was Giroud who struck again in the 31st minute: this time the Frenchman won the duel with Rrahmani and, again with his head, scored his personal brace from Calabria’s cross. This time the Azzurri seem to feel the pinch and in the 41st minute they even risk collecting a hat trick, with Reijnders putting the ball over from an excellent position following a touch from Theo. Napoli’s reaction came at the start of the second half and in the 50th minute led to a splendid goal by Politano, who drunk a couple of defenders and fired a left-footed shot under the crossbar, reopening the challenge. Maradona revived and Garcia’s team continued to push, finding the 2-2 in the 63rd minute, thanks to a free kick from Raspadori that surprised Maignan at his own post. Milan tries to respond immediately with Leao but Meret is good at neutralizing him, then in the final the Azzurri remain numerically inferior due to the double yellow given to Natan. In injury time the last opportunities came from Calabria on one side (header on the outside of the net), and on the other Kvaratskhelia who was blocked by Maignan. The 2-2 score holds up at the final whistle