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Inter Beat Torino To Continue Serie A Title Party

Hakan Calhanoglu's second-half double secured the three points at the San Siro.


Inter Milan’s Italian coach Simone Inzaghi is tossed in the air by players to celebrate the scudetto at the end of the Italian Serie A football match between Inter Milan and Torino at the San Siro Stadium in Milan, on April 28, 2024. – Inter clinched their 20th Scudetto with a 2-1 victory over AC Milan on April 22, 2024. (Photo by Piero CRUCIATTI / AFP)

 

Inter Milan celebrated the Serie A title in front of their home fans on Sunday with a straightforward 2-0 win over 10-man Torino which will be followed by a parade and city centre party.

Hakan Calhanoglu’s second-half double secured the three points at the San Siro, where on Monday Inter won their 20th league championship as the away team in a thrilling Milan derby.

The 75,000 fans present at Sunday’s on-pitch procession will be able to follow their team around Milan as Inter go on an open-topped bus parade which will finish in front of thousands at the Italian city’s iconic Piazza del Duomo.

Inter Milan’s Turkish midfielder #20 Hakan Calhanoglu celebrates with teammates after scoring during the Italian Serie A football match between Inter Milan and Torino at the San Siro Stadium in Milan, on April 28, 2024. – Inter clinched their 20th Scudetto with a 2-1 victory over AC Milan on April 22, 2024. (Photo by Piero CRUCIATTI / AFP)

Calhanoglu sealing a 28th league win of the season was appropriate as the Turkey captain has been key to Inter’s charge to the title, becoming one of Europe’s best deep-lying playmakers since being signed from AC Milan three years ago.

“I didn’t think I would score twice today, play well in a packed stadium and enjoy it so much,” said Calhanoglu to DAZN.

The 30-year-old is a hate figure for Milan supporters but he has rubbed his former fans’ faces in it this season. With Euro 2024 looming on the horizon it has probably been the best of his career.

His brace, a fine first-time strike in the 56th minute and a penalty four minutes later, took his all-competitions goal tally for the season to 15 and extended Inter’s lead on second-placed Milan to a whopping 19 points.

Calhanoglu has not scored that many goals in a single season since netting 17 as a teenager playing for Karlsruher in Germany’s third tier.

Inter Milan’s players celebrate the scudetto at the end of the Italian Serie A football match between Inter Milan and Torino at the San Siro Stadium in Milan, on April 28, 2024. – Inter clinched their 20th Scudetto with a 2-1 victory over AC Milan on April 22, 2024. (Photo by Piero CRUCIATTI / AFP)

“Today is a wonderful day, I don’t want to talk about that other lot (AC Milan). Today I’m going to have fun,” added Calhanoglu.

Inter were however helped by Adrien Tameze being sent off in the 49th minute for bundling over Henrikh Mkhitaryan, referee Maria Sole Ferrieri Caputi overturning her original decision to book Tameze after a check at the pitch-side monitor.

And Ferrieri Caputi had a much easier decision to make when Matteo Lovato brought down Marcus Thuram, allowing Calhanoglu to slam home from the spot and turn attentions to the post-match festivities.

 Champions League scrap

Sunday is also a big day in the fight for a spot in the Champions League as Bologna follow Inter with a home clash against Udinese which could ensure European football for the first time in 22 years.

Bologna, whose last continental adventure was a run to the 2002 Intertoto Cup final, will be guaranteed at least the Conference League if they beat Udinese who are four points from safety.

Thiago Motta’s side have loftier aims though and a home success on Sunday will move Bologna level on 65 points with third-placed Juventus and practically guarantee a first-ever spot in the modern Champions League.

Bologna, who played one round in the old European Cup in 1964, are seven points ahead of sixth-placed Lazio who beat Verona on Saturday evening.

Currently in the final Champions League spot are Roma, in fifth and three points in front of Lazio ahead of their huge fixture at fierce rivals and outgoing champions Napoli.

Daniele De Rossi’s Roma have a fiendishly tough end to the season with the first leg of their Europa League semi-final with German champions Bayer Leverkusen coming up on Thursday and clashes with Juve and Atalanta among their last five league fixtures of the campaign.

Atalanta, who have a game in hand on the rest of their top-five rivals, host lowly Empoli at the same time as Roma kick-off in Naples.

Gian Piero Gasperini’s side are a point behind Lazio in seventh and have their own Europa League semi with Marseille to contend with on Thursday after also reaching the Italian Cup final.

AFP