Milan had the opportunity of dislodging Simone Inzaghi’s men but fell against Fiorentina at Florence on Saturday.
Roma lost the opportunity to close on them after losing against Monza in their previous fixture. They could move to the third spot with a victory against Juventus at the Stadio Olimpico.
Since Napoli fell to Lazio on Saturday, Inter, courtesy of this win, have closed the gap on Napoli to 15 points, all thanks to goals from Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Lautaro Martinez.
After suffering a defeat in their last Serie A visit to Bologna, there was pressure on the Nerazzurri. A victory was needed to retain second place, and they got it.
Inter got the first real chance of the game when Hakan Calhanoglu stung Wladimiro Falcone’s gloves in the opening three minutes. The visitors resisted when Alessandro Tuia caught Martinez on the follow-through from a clumsy clearance.
Lecce got their opportunity when Assan Ceesay tested Andre Onana from a distance while Edin Dzeko nodded wide from a corner.
Inter eventually broke through with a well-worked team move. The move began with Robin Gosens, who released Nicolò Barella on the counter. His dummy committed a defender, allowing him to roll across for the Henrikh Mkhitaryan first-time sweep into the far top corner with the inside of his right boot.
After Joan Gonzalez blasted a distance shot over, Valentin Gendrey made a decisive sliding tackle on Denzel Dumfries.
After a few errors, the Dutchman was starting to irritate the fans. He, however, atoned for his errors later and provided the assist from the right when Lautaro Martinez fired in from 12 yards. This was helped by Dzeko, whose run created a gap by distracting defenders.
Martinez would later appease the fans by behaving like a real captain, making sure the crowd knew to credit Dumfries for that pass.
Francesco Acerbi missed a chance to score as his cross-shot flashed across the face of the goal, same with Morten Hjulmand’s header.