‘The skipper delivers once again’ – Martinez wonder goal puts Inter in command against Atalanta
Lautaro Martinez proved to be the hero of the match as his sensational strike made all the difference between Inter Milan and Atalanta, with the Nerazzurri triumphing 2-1 against the 10-man Bergamo side.
It was Hakan Calhanoglu, the talented Turkish midfielder, who gave the visitors the lead from the penalty spot just five minutes before half-time at the Gewiss Stadium. The penalty was awarded after Matteo Darmian was brought down by Atalanta goalkeeper Juan Musso. Calhanoglu’s spot-kick was expertly placed into the bottom left corner, allowing the Serie A leaders to go into the break with a one-goal advantage.
Simone Inzaghi’s men continued their strong performance in the second half and were duly rewarded with a magnificent second goal in the 57th minute. It was their captain, Martinez, who created space on the edge of the box and curled a delightful shot beyond his compatriot Musso, finding the far corner of the net.
Former West Ham striker Gianluca Scamacca, who had been the subject of numerous bids from Inter last summer, brought Atalanta back into the game when Ademola Lookman dispossessed Federico Dimarco and set up the tall Italian to score.
Atalanta fought hard for an equalizer in the closing stages, but their hopes were shattered in stoppage time when second-half substitute Rafael Toloi was shown a red card for bringing down Alexis Sanchez, earning himself a second yellow card and an early exit from the game.
This victory extends Inter’s lead at the top of Serie A to five points, with Juventus currently in second place. On the other hand, Atalanta slip to fifth position as Gian Piero Gasparini’s side suffer their second defeat in the last four matches, following a 3-2 loss to Lazio a month ago.