Filip Kostic scored the winner as Juventus made it six victories from their past seven Serie A matches with a 1-0 triumph over Inter at San Siro on Sunday.
The Bianconeri started the game four places below their hosts, but Kostic struck in the first half to send them on their way to completing a league double over Inter for the first time since 2019-20.
Simone Inzaghi’s side mustered just three shots on goal as Juve’s back line saw out victory with relative ease.
Inter’s patchy form continues, with a third defeat in four Serie A games dealt another blow to their Champions League hopes as Massimiliano Allegri’s men moved to within nine points of the Nerazzurri.
After Wojciech Szczesny twice denied Nicolo Barella early on, Kostic brilliantly extended his Juve side’s lead in the 23rd minute.
The Serbia international received the ball from Adrien Rabiot before firing into the bottom right-hand corner, with a lengthy VAR review for a suspect handball in the build-up ultimately finding no foul play.
Romelu Lukaku spurned a chance to equalize when he headed wide before the break, before Dusan Vlahovic and Manuel Locatelli both tested Andre Onan early in the second half as Juve looked to build on their advantage.
Allegri introduced Federico Chiesa from the bench and the substitute almost made it 2-0 when his powerful drive curled just wide.
Inter pushed for a late equalizer but Juve’s resilient defense stood firm to see out the remaining minutes for another clean sheet to make it eight wins from 12 in Serie A since the turn of the year, with Leandro Paredes and Danilo D’Ambrosio on target. see red for a scuffle after the final whistle.
What does it mean? Inter’s wobble continues as Juve march on
Juve’s 15-point deduction for an alleged financial breach appeared to have boosted their Champions League hopes, but their red-hot form since then means they are a team to watch as they sit just seven points clear of the top four. .
Their excellent performance as a defensive unit was key to the victory, restricting the league’s second-highest scorers to just three shots on target as Sczcesny enjoyed a relatively comfortable game between the posts.