Milan moved two points ahead of bitter rivals Inter at the top of the Serie A table with a last gasp winner from Sandro Tonali as they beat Lazio 1-2.
The hosts failed to clear well enough allowing Zlatan Ibrahimovic to nod down to Tonali to poke in and spark jubilant scenes.
Maurizio Sarri’s men started the better side and were rewarded with an early goal when Sergej Milinkovic-Savic put in a low cross that was tapped home from close range from Ciro Immobile as the Italian netted for the 26th time this season.
Milan responded well and created a few chances of their own but couldn’t find a way through a resolute Lazio defence.
Eventually, after the break, Milan equalised as Rafael Leao burst behind the opponents back four and squared it to Olivier Giroud to slide in and finish.
The game continued at a fantastic intensity as both teams went for it in an exciting encounter at the Stadio Olimpico and Milan eventually found the winner in the stoppage time to secure a massive three points as they aim for their first Scudetto title since 2011. The stuff of champions?
The title race is down to two – Milan and Inter
Coming into the game the pressure was on Milan. They were a point behind Inter coming into the game and their rivals have a game in hand so it was huge that they got all three points tonight and what a way to do it. Tonali is a childhood Milan fan and an unlikely source for goals but he found himself in the box at the crucial stage as it looked to be heading to a 1-1 draw that would’ve put Inter in control of the title battle.
But Milan got the job done and winning the game in such dramatic fashion will have some believing it is their year. Inter will be looking to make it consecutive titles and are in impressive form. They also probably have the easier run in to the end of the season but anything can happen. The Serie A title will surely be heading to Milan but for the Rossoneri or Simone Inzaghi’s men.
What about Napoli you may be asking? Well they were 0-2 up to Empoli with ten minutes remaining but capitulated and lost 3-2 leaving them seven points behind Milan and out the contest.
MAN OF THE MATCH – RAFAEL LEAO
The 22-year-old winger is a joy to watch. He got the assist for Giroud’s goal and gave Radu and Marusic a horrible time down the left. He is so quick and can shoot with such power it makes him impossible to stop. There were times you can tell he is a raw talent, sometimes choosing the wrong pass or shooting when their are better options but in an end to end game and with the emphasis on Milan to find a way back into the game he stood out.
Lazio: Strakosha 6, Lazzari 7, Patric 7, Acerbi 5, Radu 5, Milinkovic-Savic 8, Lucas 5, Alberto 5, Anderson 7, Immobile 8, Zaccagni 7
Subs: Basic 6, Cataldi 6, Marusic 5, Hysaj 6, Felipe 6.
Milan: Maignan 6, Calabria 7, Kalulu 7, Tomori 7, Hernandez 7, Kessie 6, Tonali 8, Messias 7, Diaz 5, Leao 8, Giroud 7
Subs: Ibrahimovic 6, Rebic 6, Krunic 6, Saelemaekers 6.
5’ – GOAL (IMMOBILE): Lazio have started better and it’s an early goal and of course it’s Immobile. They work a throw in nicely and Milinkovic-Savic puts in a low cross to Immobile. His movement is perfect and he can tap in from close range as Milan defenders are caught napping.
50′ – GOAL (GIROUD): Giroud scores and we’re level. Hernandez drops one in behind to Leao who is quick and bursts behind the back four. This time he does the right thing and squares it for a stretching and sliding Giroud to squeeze in.
90+2 – GOAL (TONALI): A last gasp winner from Milan – heartbreak for Lazio. Lazio don’t clear well enough and Ibrahimovic heads it down after a bad cleareance to Tonali who controls it and pokes it into the net. Wow.