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Inter take control of title race as Romelu Lukaku's stunner caps Milan derby win

Two goals from Lautaro Martínez and a spectacular third from Romelu Lukaku earned Inter a 3-0 win over Milan in Sunday’s derby, sending Antonio Conte’s side four points clear at the top of Serie A.

Inter got off to the perfect start when Lukaku escaped down the right and crossed for his strike partner to head home after just five minutes. Inter remained dominant throughout the first half, especially on the break, with both strikers spurning good chances to double their side’s lead.

Milan’s best moment of the first period came when Alessandro Bastoni dithered in making a clearance, which was eventually charged down and Zlatan Ibrahimovic picked out Hakan Calhanoglu on the penalty spot. The Turkish playmaker turned his marker well but then mis-hit an easy through-pass to Ante Rebic, sinking to his knees in despair. Inter reasserted their control, with Milan Skriniar meeting a Christian Eriksen free-kick to send a powerful header just over the bar in the last action before the interval.

Milan came out purposefully after half-time and three stunning saves at the start of the second half from Inter goalkeeper Samir Handanovic kept his side in front. First he showed his reflexes to get down and parry a bullet header from Zlatan Ibrahimovic, then made himself big to beat away another header from this Swede, this time from point-blank range. Seconds later he leapt to tip a Sandro Tonali effort over the bar.

Those stops proved crucial when 10 minutes later Martínez finished a fine, flowing Inter move to score his 13th league goal of the season to give his side some breathing space. Lukaku started the move, laying off to Achraf Hakimi, who darted inside to find Eriksen. The Dane then fed the onrushing Ivan Perisic, who squared first time for the grateful striker to tap home.

Not to be outdone, Lukaku made sure of a fourth successive league win for Inter with a wonderful goal in the 66th minute. After collecting a long ball, he swivelled to run at the heart of Milan’s defence, jinking left and rifling a low early inside Gianluigi Donnarumma’s near post.

After that Inter comfortably saw out the game, with the unimaginative hosts showing little sign of opening up a resilient Inter backline and Ibrahimovic cutting a largely isolated figure at the point of the attack. The win takes Conte’s league leaders to 53 points, four clear of second-placed Milan.

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