Injury-hit Roma fought tooth and nail to avoid defeat at Giuseppe Meazza, but Inter took down Jose Mourinho’s defensive fortress in the end. Marcus Thuram struck home beyond the 80th minute to propel Nerazzurri to a 1-0 win, ending the visitors’ mini-revival in Serie A.

Roma took this trip without several crucial first-team stars, including marquee forward Paulo Dybala and captain Lorenzo Pellegrini. Mourinho’s side had only two days to rest and prepare for this match after beating Slavia Prague in the Europa League on Thursday.

Those were all the factors as toothless Roma delivered an underwhelming performance on Romelu Lukaku’s return to Meazza. The Belgian was a marginal figure tonight as Giallorossi spent most of the game trying to fend off Inter’s attacks. Despite barely venturing forward in numbers, they came inches away from breaking the deadlock in the second half. 

Bryan Cristante had a glorious opportunity to put Roma in front. He found enough space inside Yann Sommer’s penalty area and connected his header with an inviting cross from the flank. However, the Inter goalkeeper denied the Roma midfielder with an extraordinary diving save.

It was the only time Roma were in a position to hurt Inter as tired legs took their toll tonight.

We came a bit short of energy,” Cristante said, as quoted by Tuttomercatoweb. “They are a strong team, they have a bigger squad, and we didn’t have the energy to take them up all game. That goal could have been avoided, once we conceded it became difficult to recover.

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