Juventus walked away as the winners of the Derby d’Italia by claiming a 1-2 victory over rivals Inter on Sunday evening at San Siro. Paulo Dybala opened the scoring inside four minutes, before Lautaro Martinez pulled one back, but it was Gonzalo Higuain who would have the last laugh as he snatched the winner 10 minutes from time!
Juve move on top of Serie A log
The last time Ronaldo was at San Siro, he scored his 600th club goal of his career, and tonight he was eager to add more to his tally of goals. He started up front alongside Paulo Dybala, with Federico Bernardeschi tucking behind him as a trequartista. Juventus needed only four minutes to get onto the scoresheet when Miralem Pjanic picked up the ball in midfield and directed a long ball up field. Dybala latched onto it, burst into the box and struck an angled drive past Handanovic. It was certainly a ferocious start by the Bianconeri, as Ronaldo threatened Inter’s goal when he smacked a powerful hit that rattled the crossbar above Handanovic’s head, while on the other end of the field, Bonucci made a crucial block on Romelu Lukaku’s hit all within the opening 10 minutes of the match.
There was doubting that the game was going to see action, goals and emotions, and in the 17th minute of the game, Inter were awarded a penalty after Matthijs de Ligt was judged to have hand balled the ball in the box. Lautaro stood up and made no mistake in converting the effort from the spot to put the scoreline at 1-1. The Argentine came very close to handing the hosts the lead just before the half hour mark, when a great run and diagonal shot forced Szczesny into making a spectacular outstretched save.
Antonio Conte was forced to make a change in the 33rd minute when Sensi had to be taken off in place of Vecino due to injury. The Bianconeri were dominating the chances in front of goal in the final minutes of the half, as two excellent chances fell to them. The first came when Matuidi laid off the ball for Ronaldo who was unmarked in front of goal; he then shot on the volley, only for Handanovic to push it away. CR7 then found the back of the net seconds later, following a give-and-go with Dybala, but the flag was raised as the Argentina was judged to be offside.
After the break the Bianconeri came out looking for an early goal, just like they did in the first half, and they tested Handanovic through Bernardeschi who connected on the end of Pjanic’s charged down shot and fired towards goal, but the keeper was equal to it. Dybala then sprung the offside trap and went one-on-one with the Inter goalkeeper, the Argentine spun around and struck the ball, but his angled drive went out and over. On the hour mark, Maurizio Sarri opted for a double by introducing Bentancur and Higuain in place of Khedira and Bernardeschi respectively, while Handanovic then denied Ronaldo’s shot at the near post. Juve’s possession paid off when Higuain turned the scoreline 1-2 in favour of Juventus after a Pjanic and Ronaldo combo allowed for Higuain to hit an angled drive past Handanovic from 12 yards out with 10 minutes to spare on the clock! His goal carried many similarities to the match winner he scored in the 2017/18 fixture, which saw the Bianconeri run out 2-3 winners courtesy of Pipita. Szczesny kept the scoreline intact when he pulled off a brilliant save whilst rushing off his line to deny Vecino, as Juventus claimed three big points to move on top of the Serie A table!
Inter: Handanovic; Godin (Bastoni 54’), De Vrij, Skriniar; D'Ambrosio, Barella, Brozovic, Sensi (Vecino 33’), Asamoah; R Lukaku, Lautaro Martinez (Politano 77’)
Substitutes: Padelli, Ranocchia, Dimarco, Bastoni, Gagliardini, Vecino, Lazaro, Borja Valero, Biraghi, Candreva, Politano, Esposito
Juventus: Szczesny; Cuadrado, Bonucci, De Ligt, Alex Sandro; Khedira (Bentancur 61’), Pjanic, Matuidi; Bernardeschi (Higuain 61’); Dybala (Emre Can 71’), Cristiano Ronaldo
Substitutes: Buffon, Pinsoglio, Rugani, Demiral, Bentancur, Emre Can, Rabiot, Higuain, Ramsey