MILAN: Henrikh Mkhitaryan scored twice to help Inter Milan crush neighbours AC Milan 5-1 in Serie A on Saturday and continue their perfect start to the season.
Inter, who won their first three matches without conceding a goal, moved two points clear at the top of the standings on 12 points from four games.
They are two points above second-placed Juventus, who beat Lazio 3-1 on Saturday, and three clear of Milan in third before they travel to Real Sociedad in the Champions League on Wednesday.
Mkhitaryan, Marcus Thuram, Hakan Calhanoglu and Davide Frattesi were all on target for Inter, securing their fifth consecutive win in the Milan derby across all competitions for the first time in history.
Coach Simone Inzaghi said: “Last year, four derby wins brought us a (Supercoppa Italia) trophy and allowed us to play in a very important (Champions League) final. This gives us first place, but the championship is still very long.”
Mkhitaryan struck from close range to put Inter in front in the fifth minute and new signing Thuram doubled the advantage before the break with a fine shot into the top corner for his second Serie A goal.
Milan pulled one back just before the hour mark through Rafael Leao, who latched onto a pass and shot past Inter keeper Yann Sommer as a sudden downpour of rain struck the San Siro.
Inter allowed Stefano Pioli’s side control of possession but were far more ruthless and Mkhitaryan made it 3-1 in the 69th minute before midfielder Calhanoglu added the fourth from a penalty awarded for Theo Hernandez’s foul on Lautaro Martinez.
Substitute Frattesi completed the rout in stoppage time when he was fed by Mkhitaryan and the 23-year-old outwitted the goalkeeper to find the back of the net.
Inter have beaten Milan a record 69 times in Serie A and scored a record 256 goals against their city rivals in the competition.
Valencia stun Atletico
A first-half double from Hugo Duro and a goal from Javi Guerra earned Valencia a 3-0 home win over Atletico Madrid on Saturday as they inflicted the visitor’s first La Liga loss this season.
Valencia, who came from two successive losses, outplayed an Atletico side hampered by injuries and lacking pace after the suspension of their match against Sevilla last month before the international break.
“Today we lacked everything – intensity, attitude, I don’t know,” said Atletico goalkeeper Jan Oblak. “Valencia came in much better than us. Words don’t matter. We need to improve a lot in the next games.”
Duro got Valencia an early lead with a strike from a tight angle on the left side just five minutes into the game before he bagged his second in the 34th minute after a fast break to double the lead.
“Getting the win was important and even more so after two defeats,” said the 23-year-old Duro. “It was a great joy to be able to celebrate with the fans. I guess the coach will be happy.”
Javi Guerra scored with a superb curled shot near the right post from the edge of the box to make it 3-0 in the 54th minute and send the Mestalla stadium crowd into raptures.
It was Valencia’s first win over Atletico since 2014 and takes them to fifth place with nine points.
Diego Simeone’s side, who are seventh with seven points, will play their Champions League opener at Lazio on Tuesday before their league derby against Real Madrid on Sept. 24.