Serie A leaders Inter Milan missed the chance to secure clear lead as Roma held inter at the San Siro, as it was held for 0-0 draw against Roma.
The build-up to the fixture had been overshadowed by Italian newspaper Corriere Dello Sport and the controversy. Lukaku condemned the headline as ‘One of the dumbest’ he has ever seen while Smalling said it was “wrong and insensitive.”
Antonio Conte’s Inter could not get ahead at the seventh minute when Antonio Mirante denied Lukaku.
Inter’s Marcelo Brozovic then blazed an attempt over following Mirante’s scuffed clearance shortly before half-time, while Mirante – in for Roma’s injured Pau Lopez – frustrated Inter further after the interval.
England manager Gareth Southgate was in attendance, alongside assistant Steve Holland, as Roma’s Manchester United loanee Smalling stuck tight to former Old Trafford team-mate Lukaku throughout in what was an assured display.
The result, which ends Inter’s five-match winning run, means reigning champions Juventus can move top of the league table, with victory over third-placed Lazio on Saturday.
Inter Milan Fears conceding lead in League Table.
Motivation has helped Inter to frame things as It had overcome many disadvantages on the way. Marcelo Brozovic said in a post-match interview that “our soul is our strength,”
Every time Inter have reached the top of Serie A in the recent past, a minor slip-up has always been enough to trigger a destructive mechanism that exposed the limits in the players’ attitude, leading the team to lose focus and desire. That has happened past, and so everyone is so fearful about the slip-up.
Antonio Conte Slammed the Supporter for jeering at San Siro
“The fans must support us and help us, as they are doing because it is a moment where we must make a virtue of their support,” he told Sky Italia.
“I was sorry to hear a few whistles after wrong passages [of play]. This is not good, and we need everyone. “They must support us, and they must not whistle at the first mistake.
“It is not easy to play at the San Siro; many of the boys are young; everyone needs help.
“I wanted to say this because I always want to protect the group. We must not become presumptuous; these kids must always be supported.” Instead of criticizing his all-star forward line, Conte chose instead to credit Roma’s stand-in goalkeeper Antonio Mirante.
“Yes [Lukaku and Martinez made mistakes], even if we also have to take into account Mirante’s great game, which was the best on the field,” he said.
“When we win, we draw, and we lose, we do it all together. The midfielders also had the opportunity to score, not just the forwards.
“In the second half, there was a good opportunity for Matias Vecino that Mirante deflected for a corner.” Conte added: “We had a good game and we are happy with what we produced. Unfortunately, we have not finished. We must be more precise.”
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