A first-half penalty was enough to earn the champions Internazionale a crucial 1-0 win at Juventus on Sunday, dragging Simone Inzaghi’s side back into the Serie A title race.
Juve wasted a host of chances in the opening period, with the veteran defender Giorgio Chiellini missing the most glaring of them, and their profligacy proved costly as Inter were awarded a penalty in first-half stoppage time following a VAR review.
The home side were furious about the spot-kick, but felt justice was done when Wojciech Szczesny saved Hakan Calhanoglu’s penalty, only for the referee to order a retake, which the Turkish midfielder converted to give Inter the lead.
The goal did not change the balance of play, however, as Paulo Dybala and Dusan Vlahovic both went close to an equaliser in the second half, before the Inter goalkeeper Samir Handanovic tipped Denis Zakaria’s brilliant strike on to the post.
It remained one-way traffic until the final whistle but Juve, who had 23 shots at goal to Inter’s five, could not make the pressure pay as the visitors held on to seal all three points.
Juve’s first league defeat since November leaves them on 59 points in fourth in the standings, four points behind Inter in third, with the champions now three behind the leaders Milan.
Earlier, Lorenzo Insigne had scored one and set one up as Napoli beat Atalanta 3-1 to draw level on points with Milan at the top of Serie A. The striker converted from the spot in the 14th minute after Dries Mertens had been brought down in the box, before his flicked free-kick was volleyed home by Matteo Politano to make it 2-0 at half-time.
A Marten de Roon header halved the deficit on the hour but Eljif Elmas’s cool finish, to conclude a counterattack with 10 minutes to go, made the result safe. Milan host Bologna on Monday night.
Elsewhere in Italy, Udinese’s Portuguese striker Beto hit a hat-trick in a 5-1 defeat of Cagliari that left the Sardinian club hovering precariously above the relegation zone. Walter Mazzarri’s side, who saw Alberto Grassi collect a second booking for diving in the latter stages, are three points above 18th-placed Genoa having played a game more.
Fiorentina beat Empoli with Nicolás González heading home the game’s only goal seconds after Sebastiano Luperto had seen red for the visitors. Vincenzo Italiano’s men climb to eighth, one point off the European spot.
Barcelona’s teenage sensation Pedri scored a magnificent goal in the second half to secure a 1-0 win against a fading Sevilla on Sunday as they climbed above their opponents into second spot in La Liga after extending their winning run to five games.
The 19-year-old Pedri created and scored the winner in a similar style to the trademark goals Lionel Messi scored for Barcelona before leaving to join Paris Saint-Germain last year. The midfielder was surrounded by defenders just outside the box but with three quick moves he left three opponents on the ground before finally finding a gap and rifling a precise shot past the goalkeeper Yassine Bounou and inside the far post. Barça are level on 57 points with Sevilla, who slipped to fourth, and third-placed Atlético Madrid.
Asier Villalibre’s late winner downed Elche to take Athletic Bilbao to within four points of the European spots, while Juanmi was the star of the show at the Benito Villamarín Stadium, notching two goals and two assists in Betis’s 4-1 win against Osasuna that kept his side in fifth place.
In Germany, a wonderful curling strike from the left-back Iago kickstarted Augsburg’s 3-0 victory against Wolfsburg. The Brazilian opened the scoring within the first minute, with Florian Niederlechner and Mads Pedersen clinching the points in the second half. The win was a vital one for Markus Weinzierl’s side, taking them three points clear of the drop zone and within two points of their beaten opponents, on whom they have a game in hand.
In France, Marseille moved back to second and kept up their bid for automatic Champions League qualification, Dimitri Payet’s penalty on the stroke of half-time prompting a 4-2 comeback win against St Étienne, who remain mired in the relegation places.
PSG’s Kylian Mbappé played chief tormentor on a memorable night for the France forward as he scored two and set up the other goals as the runaway Ligue 1 leaders demolished visitors Lorient 5-1. In a game where Lionel Messi and Neymar, with a double, also scored, the French champions’ attacking trio combined superbly at times to deliver a performance in sharp contrast to the embarrassing 3-0 defeat at Monaco last month.
Strasbourg held on to fourth place with a narrow defeat of Lens, Ludovic Ajorque’s second-half penalty deciding the game, and Randal Kolo Muani’s winner enabled Nantes to emerge as the winners in a seesawing five-goal thriller against Clermont, who sit a point above the drop zone.
A stunning volley from Metz’s Ibrahim Amadou in the end meant nothing as his side lost 2-1 against Monaco, while Martín Satriano’s superbly taken opener helped Brest to secure a 2-1 victory against Montpellier. Renaud Ripart held his nerve in stoppage time to secure a 1-0 win for Troyes against 10-man Reims and take his side five points clear of the relegation zone.