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21 Feb, 2021 16:48

Last laugh Lukaku? Rampant Romelu roars ‘I told you’ as Inter smash Milan in Serie A showdown on disastrous day for Zlatan (VIDEO)

Last laugh Lukaku? Rampant Romelu roars ‘I told you’ as Inter smash Milan in Serie A showdown on disastrous day for Zlatan (VIDEO)

Romelu Lukaku has run riot in the latest episode of his fierce feud with rival striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, setting up the opener before scoring the third himself as Inter Milan cruised past title rivals AC Milan 3-0 in Serie A.

Almost all of the pre-match talk had concerned the prospect of another flashpoint between the two top strikers in the Derby della Madonnina, which was their second meeting in less than a month following a tempestuous clash that saw the pair lock heads and swap accusations of poisonous insults last month.

Sweden legend Ibrahimovic was sent off as the former league leaders missed out on the semi-finals on that occasion, and he will be seething again after Inter needed just five minutes to launch a miserable afternoon for their city rivals that cemented their place at the top of the league.

Lukaku set up Lautaro Martinez for the opening goal, then troubled Milan for an hour and watched Martinez score again before adding to the scoresheet himself to make it 3-0.

By the time he was substituted 15 minutes from the end, Ibrahimovic had suffered the ignominy of Lukaku running to a corner flag to goad him in front of the cameras after scoring, with interpreters suggesting the Belgium hitman shouted "I told you, it's mine" - a possible reference to the taunts the bitter adversaries have exchanged about who is "king" of Milan.

There was a sense that the stand-off had gone full circle, arriving little more than a year after Lukaku had first teased Ibrahimovic by posing with the corner flag during Inter's 4-2 win over Milan.

The nature of the see-saw rivalry that was to come was evident that day, Ibrahimovic having scored Milan's second goal as the strugglers raced into a shock 2-0 lead at Inter.

Largely thanks to the influence and goals of Ibrahimovic, Milan have been transformed since then - although the sizeable lead they held at the top of the table for much of the first half of the season seems a distant memory after Lukaku helped Inter move four points clear with their emphatic win.

Lukaku is now the top scorer in the Italian top flight with 17 goals, one ahead of Juventus superstar Cristiano Ronaldo and three ahead of Ibrahimovic.

Ronaldo has been far from his potent best in recent weeks, although inconsistent Juve can move a point behind Milan by winning their two matches in hand.

While Ibrahimovic will not be able to make any outlandish boasts of the kind he is known for on social media following the result, the veteran still averages considerably fewer minutes per goal than any of the top five scorers in the division.

Lukaku usually hits the net every 99 minutes, with Ronaldo registering three minutes earlier and Ibrahimovic needing just 75 minutes each time he adds to his total.

"Lukaku has still room for improvement," Martinez told DAZN, alluding to the fact that the former Manchester United forward is 12 years younger than Ibrahimovic and nine younger than Ronaldo.

Also on rt.com Zlat’s that: Milan football star Ibrahimovic ‘AVOIDS racism charge’ after bizarre ‘voodoo’ comments to Serie A rival Romelu Lukaku

"He is young, he works hard on and off the pitch. He is a great person and we are happy to have him with us.

"That’s who we are. We work every day to put Inter on top. We want to continue like this - we are very happy.

"We fight all together. This is the only target left for us and we are happy to be on top of the table."

Also on rt.com ‘Go do your voodoo sh*t’: Zlatan ENRAGES Lukaku as Belgian tells Swede ‘f*ck you & your wife’ in furious Milan derby clash (VIDEO)