Denzel Dumfries scored his second goal in two games as Serie A leaders Inter Milan ended the year with a 1-0 win over Torino at home.
The Scudetto holders rode their luck and were fortunate not to go behind early on after Gleison Bremer's header was straight at the keeper and Marko Pjaca's curling shot from the edge of the box flew centimetres wide.
Simone Inzaghi's side gradually found their rhythm and broke the deadlock when Marcelo Brozovic's deft flick found Dumfries who stroked the ball into the bottom corner for his second goal in two games.
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After the goal went in, the visitors, who are without injured striker Andrea Belotti until February, created little until they brought on Marcus Warming.
Sasa Lukic forced Samir Handanovic into a good save from a free-kick and Dumfries got in a vital late block as Inter clung on to grind out the win and finish the year top of the table.
Inter far from at their best but grind out another win and clean sheet.
After a run of wins in Serie A which read 3-0, 4-0 and 5-0, the law of averages suggests Inter were always going to have to grind out a hard fought victory at some point.
This performance was one of the hallmarks of a team challenging for the title. Some of the stars may have left the San Siro in the summer but the steel and togetherness from last season's Scudetto side remains along with plenty of experience from the likes of Vidal and Handanovic.
And defensively Inzaghi will be pleased with how they limited Torino to few chances.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Arturo Vidal (Inter): The veteran Chilean came into the side for the suspended Nicolo Barella and was immense with his defensive duties, getting key blocks in. His workrate was at its usual high levels and he was solid on the ball linking up attacks.
TORINO: Milinkovic-Savic 7, Buongiorno 5, Dijdij 6, Bremer 7; Singo 6, Lukic 7, Pobega 5, Aina 6; Brekalo 6, Pjaca 6; Sanabria 5. Subs: Warming 7, Mandragora 5, Rodriguez 5, Praet n/a, Ansaldi n/a.
INTER MILAN: Handanovic 7, Skriniar 6, De Vrij 6, Bastoni 5; Dumfries 8, Vidal 9, Brozovic 6, Calhanoglu 6, Perisic 5; Dzeko 5, Lautaro Martinez 5. Subs: Vecino 5, Sanchez 5, Sensi n/a, D'Ambrosio n/a, Dimarco n/a.
18' - DOUBLE CHANCE FOR TORINO! Brekalo's cross is partially cleared, it falls to Aina whose long ranger is deflected over for a corner. The corner falls to Bremer whose shot is blocked, Pjaca then sees his curling shot go centimetres wide.
30' - GOAL FOR INTER! From a counter attack, Brozovic to Dumfries to sidefoot the ball in from inside the box.
65' - GOOD SAVE! The freekick around 25 yards out in a central position is struck by Lukic and the keeper parries, good save.
87' - SO CLOSE! Dzeko to Sanchez whose strike from outside the box skews wide, he could have had 3 in 3 games.
- The Nerazzurri have won seven Serie A games on the spin.
- 32 - Inter won 32 league games in 2021: in #SerieA history only Juventus in 2016 (33) gained more wins in a single calendar year. Unstoppable.
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