Di Lorenzo stunner helps Serie A champion Napoli beat Inter 3-1
MILAN (AP) — Napoli captain Giovanni Di Lorenzo scored a stunning goal to help the Serie A champion beat 10-man Inter Milan 3-1 on Sunday to end the Nerazzurri’s eight-match winning run.
Di Lorenzo’s goal came with five minutes remaining, shortly after Romelu Lukaku had leveled for Inter by canceling out André Anguissa’s opener.
Inter had to play most of the match with 10 men after midfielder Roberto Gagliardini was sent off shortly before the break following a second yellow card.
Inter remained two points above fifth-place AC Milan in a tight fight for the top four in Serie A. Lazio could leapfrog the Nerazzurri with a result at Udinese later.
Inter was full of confidence after beating Milan 1-0 on Tuesday to advance to the Champions League final for the first time since it won the competition in 2010 under José Mourinho along with the league and Italian Cup.
It was a fantastic atmosphere at Stadio Diego Armando Maradona with Napoli fans still celebrating the team’s first title in 33 years.
Inter was reduced to 10 men four minutes before the break when Gagliardini, who had already been warned by the referee, was shown a second yellow card and sent off.
Napoli laid siege to the Inter goal and it eventually paid off in the 67th minute when Piotr Zieliński threaded the ball through to Anguissa, who flicked it up and fired it into the bottom right corner with a swiveling volley.
However, the 10 men of Inter managed to level eight minutes from time when Lukaku stuck out a foot to prod Federico Dimarco’s cross from the left into the bottom far corner, shortly after Giovanni Simeone had a second goal for Napoli harshly ruled out.
But Napoli restored its advantage three minutes later in stunning fashion. Di Lorenzo controlled the ball, skipped forward a few paces before lifting it into the top left corner from 20 yards out.
Gianluca Gaetano sealed the result in stoppage time with his first goal for Napoli.
Lecce and Spezia played out a 0-0 draw which did neither side any favors in their bids to escape the drop but mathematically relegated Cremonese.
With Sampdoria and now Cremonese relegated, the race to avoid the final spot in the bottom three will go right down to the wire.
Verona currently occupies 18th spot but is just one point below Spezia and three below Lecce.
Fiorentina geared up for Wednesday’s Italian Cup final against Inter with a 1-1 draw at Torino.
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Daniella Matar, The Associated Press