Romelu Lukaku led Inter Milan to the top of the Serie A standings, after helping them secure a 3-1 victory over Lazio on Sunday night.
Inter Milan opened the scoring halfway through the first half as Romelu Lukaku found the back of the net from the penalty spot after strike partner Lautaro Martinez had been fouled inside the Lazio box by Wesley Hoedt. The Nerazzurri were two goals to the good on the verge of half-time with Lukaku powering an effort into the bottom left corner.
Lazio started to make a push in search of a goal after the break and were able to pull one goal back as Sergej Milinkovic-Savic’s deflected free-kick from the edge of the box made its way past Samir Handanovic at the hour mark. However, Inter Milan were able to re-establish their two-goal cushion minutes later, with Martinez finding the back of the net after a brilliant run from Lukaku.
The result put Inter Milan on top of the Serie A table, a point above neighbours AC Milan, who lost 2-0 to Spezia earlier in the weekend. And, here’s how we rated the performances of Antonio Conte’s men at San Siro, on Sunday night.
Samir Handanovic: 6/10
Making his 500th career appearance, the Inter Milan captain wasn’t called into action a great deal. Did well to charge out and stop Manuel Lazzari from taking aim at goal before making a good save to deny Ciro Immobile. Left wrong-footed for the goal due to a huge deflection.
Milan Skriniar: 8/10
Rock-solid at the back as the Slovakian international ensured very little got past him on Sunday night. Made a game-high eight clearances and four tackles and was fairly accurate with his distribution from the back as well.
▪︎1 blocked shots
▪︎3/9 long balls
▪︎4/5 duels won#InterLazio
Best Inter centre back? 🕵️♂️ pic.twitter.com/gBg2qNrSm5
— The Underrated Scout (@ScoutUnderrated) February 14, 2021
Stefan de Vrij: 7/10
Organised his backline well to ensure that his former employers hardly got a look-in at Handanovic’s goal. Solid positioning, strong in the air and was precise with his passing, with a few of his long passes even releasing attackers in dangerous positions.
Alessandro Bastoni: 7/10
Much like his defensive partners, the 21-year-old hardly put a foot wrong against Lazio. Was alert to any potential threat and stepped out confidently when on the ball. Promising.
Achraf Hakimi: 5/10
A difficult outing for the Moroccan international, who was mostly well-marshalled by Adam Marusic on his side, restricting his attacking contributions. Then allowed Lazio a way back into the game by conceding the free-kick from which Milinkovic-Savic pulled one goal back.
Nicolo Barella: 6.5/10
Energetic and industrious as always, as he strode forward when on the ball and put in the hard yards when off it. However, wasn’t able to make the kind of impact on the proceedings that he has been doing in recent matches. Completed two dribbles.
Marcelo Brozovic: 7/10
Aggressive and full of intent as he reclaimed possession effectively in the middle of the park frequently and initiated sharp, quick transitions. Made two tackles and a match-high four interceptions, while he also played a hand in Lukaku’s second goal of the game.
Christian Eriksen: 7/10
Conte: "Eriksen now plays with a different rhythm, he is more aggressive. He needed time to adapt to Italian football. Having Christian is an extra weapon for us, now I'm more serene to bet on him"
CHRISTIAN ERIKSEN SZN IS TRULY UPON US 🔥🔥🔥 pic.twitter.com/25kJYCJyr9
— Uncle Sharma (@RSharmzz) February 14, 2021
The Danish playmaker’s resurgence at Inter Milan continued as he put in another impressive display in the centre of the park. Was forward-thinking and purposeful with his passing and played in a couple of key passes as well, while working hard off the ball. Another step in the right direction for the ex-Tottenham star.
Ivan Perisic: 6.5/10
The Croatian was preferred at left wing-back again, but that could have hurt Inter as he wasn’t all too comfortable defensively, especially in the early stages of the game. Did show signs of improvement as the game wore on and was a good outlet getting forward too, delivering four key passes.
Lautaro Martinez: 8/10
A lively presence at the top, the Argentine international caused the Lazio defence problems with his energy and link-up with Lukaku. Won the penalty leading to the opening goal for his team and then got himself a well-deserved goal in the second half to destroy any hopes of a Lazio comeback.
Romelu Lukaku: 9/10
Romelu Lukaku's game by numbers vs Lazio:
100% shot accuracy
8 touches in the opp. box
5 ball recoveries
5 duels won
3 take-ons completed
Firing Inter to the top of Serie A. 🔵⚫️ pic.twitter.com/PO82ZQ3VMg
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) February 14, 2021
Continued to show why he is such a pivotal player for Antonio Conte and Inter Milan. Dispatched the penalty with composure after having played Martinez in, leading to the spot-kick. Showed his clinical nature to score the second goal before going on a near 40-yard sprint to set his strike partner up for the third goal. Top class player.
Roberto Gagliardini: 6/10
On for Eriksen in the 71st minute. Kept things under control in midfield.
Alexis Sanchez: N/A
Replaced Martinez with a little over ten minutes left. Looked energetic and purposeful in his little cameo.
Danilo D’Ambrosio: N/A
Came on for Hakimi in stoppage time.
Matteo Darmian: N/A
Thrown on for Perisic in added time.
Andrea Pinamonti: N/A
Stoppage time substitute for Lukaku.