Martínez scores again as Inter beats Milan in Serie A derby

Milan, Feb 6 (BNA): World Cup winner Lautaro Martinez continued his roaring start to the year as he put Inter Milan on their way to a 1-0 victory over AC Milan in the Derby della Madonnina.

Martinez has been in fantastic form since helping Argentina win the World Cup in December and netting his seventh goal in his last eight matches as Inter cemented second place in Serie A with their second victory over their fierce rivals in less than three weeks.

“Once the World Cup was over, I said winning it motivated me,” Martinez said. “It’s the best gift I’ve ever received, I’ve learned a lot and I’m trying to put it all on the field.”

It was Martinez’s 12th league goal of the season, putting him four goals behind Serie A top scorer Victor Osimhen, who scored two more goals on Sunday to help runaway leader Napoli to a 3-0 win over lowly Spezia, the Associated Press reports.

Inter are 13 points behind Napoli and three points behind third-placed Roma. They are five points clear of Lazio, Atalanta and Milan, and have dropped to sixth after a dismal start to the year.

“I praised my players because they were perfect, I don’t remember winning the derby and dominating like that,” said Inter coach Simone Inzaghi.

“We had a really great derby, winning two derby matches in 20 days isn’t something that happens every year. We don’t look ahead or behind in the standings, but only at ourselves.”

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Milan’s winless streak stretched to seven matches. This streak included elimination from the Coppa Italia and a 3-0 loss to Inter in the Super Cup.

Prior to the derby, Milan had also conceded an unprecedented nine goals in their last two Serie A matches.

However he may have been playing in their minds, the Rossoneri defended deeply from the start and rarely got out of their own half. Milan had to wait almost an hour for their first shot, and it was just off target.

Inter almost took the lead in the 10th minute, but Martinez headed home from the right corner.

Martínez did better in the 34th minute when he pulled away from Simon Kjaer at the near post to head in a corner and deflected the Milan defender out of his way.

Romelu Lukaku thought he had scored his first league goal since August, late on, but the whistle had already gone for a foul on Malick Thiaw.

Martinez’s goal was ruled out for offside.

FIVE STARS OSIMHEN

Osimhen looked set to catapult Napoli to the Serie A title as the Nigeria striker netted for the fifth consecutive league match.

Spezia defended well against Napoli’s stellar attack but awarded the visitors a penalty less than 10 seconds into the break when defender Arkadiusz Reca was trying to block Matteo Politano but didn’t expect the ball to rebound into his outstretched arm. .

Khvicha Kvaratskhelia scored the penalty kick, forcing the match to open up.

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Osimhen had a goal ruled out in the 62nd minute to pull Mattia Caldara back but he headed in his first goal in the 68th minute and doubled his tally five minutes later after another pass from Kvaratskilia.

Spezia remained five points above the relegation zone.

European fighting

Torino beat Udinese 1-0 to leapfrog their opponent into Europa League qualification.

And Turin is one point ahead of Udinese and Bologna, who won 2-1 at Fiorentina, achieving their first victory in Florence in 13 years.






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