Juventus vs. Inter Milan, final score 3-1: Bianconeri dominate Derby D'Italia from start to finish

Claudio Villa

Juventus brushed aside a lacklustre Inter to not only emphasise the canyon between the two sides now, but also to go nine points clear at the top of Serie A.

For the Derby D'Italia, Juventus coach Antonio Conte only made two changes with the suspended Gianluigi Buffon replaced in goal by Marco Storari, and Claudio Marchisio making way for Andrea Pirlo.  Walter Mazzarri made just two changes to the side that drew with Catania last week, adding extra strength to the midfield in adding Mateo Kovačić and Saphir Taïder for the injured Esteban Cambiasso, and Diego Milito.

With the contrasting fortunes of the two sides, it was always going to be Juventus who approached this encounter more confidently and they managed to carve out an opportunity inside three minutes, as Carlos Tévez's left-foot volley from eight yards was well saved by Samir Handanović in the Inter goal.

Despite Inter's attempts to pack the midfield, Juve's engine room, marshalled by the superb Arturo Vidal, was clearly superior and Inter were restricted to attacking on the counter. After only 15 minutes, the Bianconeri's superiority was demonstrated in style. Stephan Lichtsteiner escaped the attention of Mateo Kovačić and ghosted in around the back of a sleeping Inter defence to meet Andrea Pirlo's sumptuous pass over the top to guide the ball past Handanović with a diving header into the corner.

The dynamic of the match remained, with Inter restricted to prodding forwards on the counter attack, whilst the Juve midfield machine really took hold and dominated. Despite this, Juventus struggled to carve out and clear chances as Inter at least got men behind the ball and held on relatively well.  They even managed to create a good opportunity of their own prior to half time as Leonardo Bonucci was caught in possession by Mateo Kovačić, who broke forward with Ricky Álvarez and Rodrigo Palacio in support. The young Croatian passed to Palacio on his right but the Argentine forward shot wildly over the bar when he really should've hit the target.

After the break, Juventus took hold of the match almost instantly by scoring with their first chance. Inter failed to clear a poorly taken corner kick and the ball came back into the box to Paul Pogba, who outmuscled Zdravko Kuzmanović to shield the ball so that Giorgio Chiellini could lash home for a rare finish with his right foot.

Soon after, Palacio could've halved the deficit as Álvarez found him eight yards out with a low cross from the left however Inter's goalscoring woes were really hammered home as the usually reliable Argentine scooped the ball well over the bar.

After 56 minutes, it was essentially all over as Arturo Vidal got the goal his outstanding effort deserved. A throw-in from the left found Fernando Llorente in the box and he shielded the ball from Hugo Campagnaro and got a pass away to Pogba, who had made a penetrating run. The French midfielder's effort was saved but Vidal was first on the scene to put the loose ball away for his fourth goal in his last five matches.

Although Juventus were rarely troubled, Inter did manage to pull a goal back with 18 minutes still remaining as Rolando fired in after the ball fell to him following a corner kick.

The goal did appear to galvanise Inter and for a brief period, they looked like they were getting back into the match, forcing a series of corners and generally putting together their best spell of the match. With four minutes remaining, Palacio was again presented with a golden opportunity as substitute and debutant Danilo D'Ambrosio's cross was deflected to him at the far post, however he was off target again as his header went harmlessly over Marco Storari's goal.

Mirko Vučinić, after nearly moving to Inter in January, made a late appearance and he had a shot deflected on to the post in stoppage time as Juventus easily held on to record an easy victory and move nine points clear at the top of the table.

Juventus: Storari; Barzagli (Cáceres 63), Bonucci, Chiellini; Lichtsteiner (Isla 82), Vidal, Pirlo, Pogba, Asamoah; Tévez, Llorente (Vučinić 86)

Goals: Lichtsteiner 16, Chiellini 47, Vidal 56

Inter: Handanović; Campagnaro, Rolando, Juan Jesus; Jonathan (D'Ambrosio 58), Kovačič (Botta 66), Kuzmanović (Milito 55), Taïder, Nagatomo; Álvarez; Palacio

Goals: Rolando 72.

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