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Internazionale v Napoli Live Commentary, 21/11/21

FT
3 - 2
INT
NAP
H. Çalhanoğlu (25 pen)
I. Perišić (44)
Lautaro Martínez (61)
P. Zieliński (17)
D. Mertens (78)
Stadio Giuseppe Meazza

Commentary

Napoli still lead the Serie A title race then but Inter are not too far behind. There's still plenty of time for the champions to catch up. That's all for now. Goodbye!
Inter stay third in Serie A behind Napoli and Milan, but this victory will remind that pair that the champions are still very much breathing down their necks. Napoli stay top on goal difference. They had six shots to Inter's four in the second half, so despite Mertens' late miss it was their meek first-half display that cost them.
Inter secure the victory they need to reduce Napoli's lead at the top to four points! Inzaghi's men have edged an absorbing encounter which looked over once Martinez put them 3-1 up. Mertens' lovely goal gave Napoli hope, but a great Handanovic save and Mertens' skied effort at the death have allowed Inter to squeak an important win.
90' + 9' FULL-TIME: INTER 3-2 NAPOLI
90' + 8' Inter get play back underway but there's no more time for Napoli. Rui brings down Skriniar to give away a free-kick and that's it!
90' + 7' Mertens blows a golden opportunity to send Napoli home with a point! Inter desperately hook a low cross away from the byline but the visitors keep pushing. Anguissa finds Mertens unmarked at the far post with a great cross. The Belgian leans back though and can't keep his volley down. It whizzes way over and Inter survive!
90' + 6' Inter see the free-kick out to roars from the home fans. They haven't got long to hold on now. Spalletti flashes a wry smile down on the touchline.
90' + 4' Napoli are continuing to probe. Suddenly Inter are looking nervous as Skriniar trips Koulibaly just outside the box. 
E. Džeko
Yellow Card
Internazionale
90' + 2' Inter's substitute striker Dzeko picks up a late yellow card for kicking the ball away after a Satriano foul on Rrahmani. If Inter hold out for the three points he won't care a bit.
90' The Inter fans are blowing for the full-time whistle but they've got some time to wait yet... Eight minutes, in fact! Napoli can't achieve anything with a free-kick but keep pushing as Di Lorenzo crosses in. Handanovic makes a stunning save to tip Rui's stooped header onto the crossbar and out for a corner which Inter clear.
M. Satriano
I. Perišić
Internazionale
89' Inter make a late substitution to help them see added time out. Their Uruguayan forward Satriano replaces Perisic.
88' Inter are doing a good job of winning niggly free-kicks and preventing Napoli from gaining any late momentum. Mertens is the offender this time, tripping Brozovic.
86' Anguissa bundles over Dimarco, handing Inter a free-kick down their left. It's swung towards the far post and played to Dzeko in the centre who can't get a clean shot away. Skriniar shoots off-target from distance.
S. Handanovič
Yellow Card
Internazionale
84' Handanovic is booked for taking his time in taking the goal-kick. Inter clearly aren't averse to using the dark arts now if they need to.
82' Thankfully both Dzeko and Ospina are fit to play on, albeit with bandages around their heads. Napoli resume their search for an equaliser, with Mertens scuffing his shot from the centre of the box. Zielinski fires over from range.
80' There's another lengthy delay due to a clash of heads, this time between Dzeko and Ospina as the pair race each other to an Inter ball over the top. Both players need looking at by the physios. 
K. Koulibaly
Assist
Napoli
78' Napoli did an excellent job of crowding Dzeko out there. All Koulibaly had to do was lay the ball off and Mertens did the rest. We're all set up for an interesting last 10 minutes or so.
D. Mertens
Goal
Napoli
78' GOAL! INTER 3-2 NAPOLI! Mertens hauls Napoli back in the game with a sumptuous long-range finish! Koulibaly catches Dzeko in possession in his own half and the Belgian capitalises on it, curling a beautiful effort into the top left corner from outside the box. Handanovic gets his fingertips to it but can't keep it out.
77' Anguissa tussles with Bastoni near Inter's corner flag but fails to prevent the hosts winning the throw-in. Napoli have looked toothless since Osimhen went off with that head injury.
F. Dimarco
N. Barella
Internazionale
75' Barella's the next player to get an early rest. Dimarco is his replacement for Inter.
R. Gagliardini
Lautaro Martínez
Internazionale
75' Inter take the opportunity to bring on some fresh players of their own. Martinez heads off to warm applause. Gagliardini comes on for him.
E. Elmas
H. Lozano
Napoli
75' Lozano's game is also over. Elmas takes his place on Napoli's left flank.
D. Mertens
L. Insigne
Napoli
75' Napoli chang their wingers in an attempt to salvage the game. Mertens replaces their quiet captain Insigne.
A. Vidal
Yellow Card
Internazionale
72' Vidal's shown a yellow card for tripping Anguissa. The Chilean protests his innocence but the referee doesn't care a jot.
72' Zielinski floats a free-kick into Inter's box from deep. The hosts win the first header, although Vidal catches Anguissa in his attempts to stop Napoli following up.
70' Inter still look most likely to score again. Perisic drifts inside from the left and shoots for the bottom left corner. Ospina gets down low to stop the shot.
68' Dzeko leaves the pitch briefly after picking up a knock but is soon back in the thick of things. Meanwhile, Napoli are still huffing and puffing as Inter intercept a cross and calmly play out from their own penalty box.
66' The Inter fans are in fine voice now as Handanovic intercepts Di Lorenzo's throughball. Napoli look beaten at the moment.
64' After scoring nine goals between them between September and the October international break, Martinez's goal is just the second by him or Dzeko in their six Serie A games since. It's come at an ideal time for Inter.
A. Vidal
H. Çalhanoğlu
Internazionale
62' Calhanoglu also makes way. Vidal trots onto the pitch for Inter to tighten up their midifeld.
E. Džeko
J. Correa
Internazionale
62' Inter react to going 3-1 up by making substitutions. Dzeko replaces Correa up front first.
J. Correa
Assist
Internazionale
61' Napoli got caught cold there, and Correa made the right choice in picking Martinez out. Inter should have the three points wrapped up with that goal.
Lautaro Martínez
Goal
Internazionale
61' GOAL! INTER 3-1 NAPOLI! Inter react quickest to Ruiz's blocked shot and burst upfield to secure a two-goal lead! Correa spots Martinez to his right and finds his compatriot who slots a precise effort into the bottom left corner from just inside the box.
60' Napoli try to work the ball through the middle but Inter are having none of it. The visitors have another go and Ruiz cracks a shot against a defender from the edge of the box.
58' Anguissa slides in on Calhanoglu and slightly mistimes his challenge, giving away a free-kick.
56' Play gets back underway with Skriniar back on the pitch. Napoli clear Bastoni's fizzed cross from the left wing.
A. Petagna
V. Osimhen
Napoli
55' Napoli make that enforced substitution, one which won't help their chances of recovery in this game. Petagna takes Osimhen's place up front for the visitors.
52' Skriniar is back up and running at the side of the pitch, but Osimhen takes a while longer to get to his feet. He doesn't require a stretcher but he looks groggy and will play no further part in this game.
50' Lozano has a low cross-cum-shot from the right cleared off the line at the far post. Napoli send the ball back into the danger area and there's a nasty clash of heads between Osimhen and Skriniar which leaves both players requiring treatment. The free-kick goes Inter's way.
48' Martinez finds time to test Ospina from the centre of the box, inspiring him to stop the ball from finding the bottom left corner. The Napoli keeper winces after landing awkwardly on his hand, but should be fine to continue.
47' Napoli attack straight from the kick-off and appeal for a penalty of their own as Osimhen takes a tumble in the box. The referee isn't interested.
46' Napoli get the second half going. They've made no changes during the break. Neither have Inter.
Inter had 13 shots to Napoli's three in the first half so you can't begrudge them their narrow advantage. Napoli need to find a way to put Inter's defence under greater pressure. Apart from Zielinski's goal and a few Osimhen half-chances, the visitors have been muted.
Inter have reacted extremely well to Zielinski's early strike to go in with a half-time lead. Napoli started well but the hosts soon found their feet in the game, forcing a penalty which was dispatched by Calhanoglu before Perisic caught Ospina off-guard from a corner.
45' + 1' HALF-TIME: INTER 2-1 NAPOLI
45' Inter threaten to score a third before the break as Martinez has two shots blocked from inside the box. The referee takes a look at his watch and blows the half-time whistle.
H. Çalhanoğlu
Assist
Internazionale
44' Perisic strained his neck muscles to reach Calhanoglu's fizzed ball in and Ospina couldn't react in time to stop it. Napoli need half-time to regroup.
I. Perišić
Goal
Internazionale
44' GOAL! INTER 2-1 NAPOLI! Perisic completes Inter's first-half turnaround! Calhanoglu swings the corner in and the Croatian flicks it towards goal with his head from a tight angle at the near post. Ospina dives across to claw it away and Napoli clear, but the ball has already crossed the line!
43' Di Lorenzo's square pass in front of his own box rolls to Barella who strikes straight away, forcing Ospina to make a diving save. Correa's follow-up shot is tame and rolls straight into the Napoli keeper's arms. Correa goes for goal again seconds later and the shot deflects out for a corner. Inter are turning the screw.
H. Çalhanoğlu
Yellow Card
Internazionale
41' Calhanoglu lands his name in the book for scything down Lozano near the touchline. The Mexican was beating him for pace.
39' Napoli smuggle the ball out of their half and work it from left to right. Lozano clips a high cross back from the byline and Osimhen can't keep his header down from the edge of the six-yard box.
38' Koulibaly tracks Darmian's run to punt out for an Inter throw-in. Inter take it quickly and Di Lorenzo heads out to hand the hosts a corner, which they soon use to force another.
36' Martinez receives the ball with his back to goal and swivels to shoot from the edge of the box. His effort dips just wide of the right-hand post.
A. Rrahmani
Yellow Card
Napoli
35' Rrahmani is booked for stopping Correa's attempt to carry Inter forward on the break.
34' Osimhen sniffs an opportunity in the box which is hurriedly blocked by Inter. The Nigerian scoops an effort back towards goal at the second attempt but the hosts win the header. Handanovic is alert enough to beat Lozano to a throughball shortly after.
32' Napoli slow the pace of the game, popping the ball around in their own half. They've given Inter too much time in possession since they went ahead.
30' Napoli give the ball away in their own half and Inter dart down their right, only for Ospina to catch the resulting cross. The Colombian sends his team upfield quickly and the visitors earn a throw-in.
28' Darmian fires an attempted pass down the line for Correa which is cut out. Napoli have nowhere to go at the moment.
27' Inter are in the ascendancy now, winning a corner down their right as Calhanoglu's shot is blocked. Calhanoglu's delivery is headed away by Napoli, who get an offside call in their favour seconds later as the hosts put the ball back into the mixer.
H. Çalhanoğlu
Penalty Goal
Internazionale
25' GOAL! INTER 1-1 NAPOLI! Calhanoglu steps up and confidently dispatches the penalty into the bottom left corner, sending Ospina the wrong way. It's all square!
K. Koulibaly
Yellow Card
Napoli
24' Koulibaly receives a yellow card for handball. Calhanoglu is preparing to take the penalty kick...
23' PENALTY FOR INTER! After watching the replay, the referee takes no hesitation in pointing to the spot! Koulibaly clearly handled the ball. He's a touch unfortunate as he was trying to defend himself from the shot at close range, but you can't raise your arms like that nowadays.
22' Barella immediately appeals for a penalty as he lashes a shot against Koulibaly in the box. After play continues for a few seconds, the referee pauses things to go and watch the incident back...
21' Inter are starting to dictate the play following the shock of going behind. Napoli are holding firm for the time being.
19' Inter look to make amends right away as Rui brings down Barella in Napoli's half. The free-kick's floated in by Calhanoglu and Skriniar nods wide of the left-hand post.
L. Insigne
Assist
Napoli
17' That was a wonderful counter-attack by Napoli, and Insigne had the peace of mind to pick out Zielinski. It was some finish too.
P. Zieliński
Goal
Napoli
17' GOAL! INTER 0-1 NAPOLI! Zielinkski gives Napoli the lead through a thunderous strike. The visitors pounce as Inter get caught upfield. Insigne passes inside to find the Polish international in plenty of space, and he fires past Handanovic from outside the box.
16' Osimhen chases after Anguissa's pass over the top but is unable to reach it. Inter go up the other end and fire wide through Darmian.
14' Darmian feigns to cross from the right before passing back inside. Inter keep the ball moving until Brozovic eventually fires in. The offside flag goes straight up.
13' Osimhen shrugs off a challenge down the right wing to lay the ball off for Napoli. The visitors can't create a shooting opportunity though, and Koulibaly gives away a foul high up the pitch.
12' Receiving a pass with his back to goal, Osimhen tries to flick the ball in the direction of Lozano but catches Ranocchia's hand as he does so. Inter get the free-kick.
V. Osimhen
Yellow Card
Napoli
10' The referee shows Osimhen the game's first yellow card for his clumsy tackle. The Nigerian pats Skriniar on the head in apology.
9' Inter stop Napoli's latest attack and look to venture forward. Osimhen clumsily challenges Skriniar for the ball as he's in the process of clearing it and leaves the defender on the turf.
7' Martinez gets a decent chance on goal, heading Perisic's right-footed cross over the crossbar. Both teams are looking up for this match.
5' Ruiz swipes an effort towards goal from the left of the box, slipping as he does so. Handanovic makes a routine save at his near post.
4' Napoli get a free-kick deep in Inter's half. Lozano stretches to reach the ball as it's floated into the box but it bounces harmlessly out of play.
3' Inter go on the attack first as Perisic flings a cross into the box from the left. Darmian challenges Rui for the header near the byline. Napoli are awarded a goal-kick.
1' The hosts Inter get this game underway!
The two teams stride out onto the San Siro pitch. Inter are wearing their usual black and blue stripes. Napoli will play in their white away strip, decorated this month by the image of their late hero Diego Maradona who passed away this time last year.
Inter are unbeaten in their last four Serie A matches against Napoli. They haven't even conceded a goal to their visitors at San Siro since April 2017. It's the league's top scorers against the league's tightest defence. Something's got to give.
Inter boss Simone Inzaghi makes two changes to his team from their 1-1 draw with Milan last time out. Ranocchia replaces the injured Stefan de Vrij while Correa takes Dzeko's place up front. There are also two changes to Napoli from their draw with Verona. Koulibaly returns at the back, as does Lozano on their right wing.
SUBS: Kevin Malcuit, Dries Mertens, Juan Jesus, Stanislav Lobotka, Eljif Elmas, Davide Marfella, Faouzi Ghoulam, Andrea Petagna, Alex Meret.
NAPOLI (4-2-3-1): David Ospina; Giovanni Di Lorenzo, Amir Rrahmani, Kalidou Koulibaly, Mario Rui; Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa, Fabian Ruiz; Hirving Lozano, Piotr Zielinski, Lorenzo Insigne (c); Victor Osimhen.
SUBS: Arturo Vidal, Roberto Gagliardini, Alex Cordaz, Matias Vecino, Denzel Dumfries, Danilo D'Ambrosio, Ionut Radu, Aleksandar Kolarov, Stefano Sensi, Federico Dimarco, Edin Dzeko, Martín Satriano.
INTER (3-5-2): Samir Handanovic (c); Milan Skriniar, Andrea Ranocchia, Alessandro Bastoni; Matteo Darmian, Nicolo Barella, Marcelo Brozovic, Hakan Calhanoglu, Ivan Perisic; Joaquin Correa, Lautaro Martinez.
Napoli are the only side yet to be beaten in Serie A this season, having gone unbeaten in their last 21 league games. Luciano Spalletti will want his men to maintain that record against his former side and ease ahead of their nearest rivals AC Milan.
Inter already have catching up to do at the top of the table as they find themselves seven points behind league leaders Napoli. The defending champions need to regain their ruthless streak, having failed to win in all four of their games this term against sides who finished in the top seven last season.
Hello and welcome to our live text commentary of this Serie A match between Inter and Napoli at San Siro.