'There’s a new king in town': Lukaku takes cheeky dig at Zlatan after Inter roar back to win Milan derby (VIDEO)
Milan had seemed in total control at half-time of Sunday's derby at the San Siro, after the 38-year-old Ibrahimovic nodded down for Ante Rebic to open the scoring before the giant Swede himself headed home to put his team 2-0 up.
But Antonio Conte’s fired-up Inter roared back into contention after the break, scoring twice in the space of three minutes through a superb Marcelo Brozovic volley and a Matias Vecino finish.
Dutch defender Stefan de Vrij then headed a resurgent Inter in front with 20 minutes to play before Lukaku, 26, sealed the win with another header in injury time.
The big Belgian celebrated wildly, whipping off his shirt and attaching it to the corner flag before raising it high above his head.
It made for an iconic image, and the forward later shared it on his social media accounts with the caption: "There’s a new king in town."
there’s a new king in town pic.twitter.com/w9yv4cVzrJ— R.Lukaku Bolingoli9 (@RomeluLukaku9) February 9, 2020
That could be seen as a cheeky dig at former Manchester United teammate Zlatan, who rejoined AC Milan in the winter transfer window and has since been his typically cocksure self with proclamations of greatness returning to the Italian league.
ZLATAN HITS OUT
The Swede certainly made his presence felt in the first half on Sunday as Milan dominated an uncharacteristically subdued Inter.
It was an incident-packed, helter-skelter Milan derby in which also Ibrahimovic hit the post with a header late-on as he spurned the chance to equalize.
Milan’s Hakan Calhanoglu also struck the post, while new Inter signing rattled the crossbar with a long-range free-kick after coming on as a substitute.
But ultimately it was Inter who ran out winners, leaving an unhappy Zlatan to slate his teammates for their second-half showing.
"It's difficult to explain what happened," said the Swede – who has won the Serie A title as both a Milan and Inter player.
"At half-time we told ourselves, the first 15 minutes going back out there will be crucial, and in that 15-minute spell we conceded two goals.
"We stopped playing, the team stopped believing, we stopped pressing, didn't pass it around enough. From the equaliser onwards, everything collapsed.
"I think a lot of it is down to experience, because you must know how to control a game at 2-0 up, not just winning at the end.
“It's strange, because our first half was practically perfect. I expected more from Inter and the first-half performance did not look like a team worthy of second place. They did after the break."
Whatever Inter boss Conte said at half-time it did the trick, as his team’s stunning comeback propelled them to the Serie A summit as they leapfrogged Lazio and went ahead of Juventus – who suffered a shock defeat to Hellas Verona on Saturday – on goal difference.
Stefano Pioli’s Milan are languishing down in 10th in the Serie A table, a distant 10 points off the Champions League places.