Lautaro Martinez and Antonio Candreva bagged braces as Inter beat Benevento 6-2 to set up a Coppa Italia quarter-final with Lazio.
Andrea Ranocchia and Daniele Padelli got their first games of the season, while Lautaro Martinez was tested alongside Mauro Icardi. Benevento play in Serie B and this was their maiden Coppa Italia Round of 16 tie, but couldn’t bring their fans to enjoy the San Siro atmosphere, as the game was played behind closed doors due to persistent racist chanting from Inter supporters.
Within 95 seconds, Antonio Candreva was tripped by Luca Antei for a penalty, which Icardi converted with power and precision.
Cristian Tello almost equalised straight away, forcing a difficult Padelli save at the near post, but Inter doubled their lead on a corner. Icardi’s header bounced off the upright and Candreva blasted in the rebound.
Riccardo Improta’s curler skimmed the bar, he had another attempt charged down and Roberto Insigne – little brother of Napoli star Lorenzo – tested Padelli.
On the stroke of half-time, Inter got their third with a ferocious left-foot strike from Dalbert under the bar in a very tight angle, having run on to an Ivan Perisic through ball.
Perisic provided another assist straight after the restart, floating the cross for Lautaro Martinez’s precise header from six yards.
Benevento did not give in and Padelli had to push an Insigne strike over the bar, but Insigne Junior did get on the scoresheet eventually by curling a free kick around the wall into the near bottom corner.
However, Lautaro Martinez completed his brace with a low finish from just inside the penalty area on Perisic’s third assist of the evening.
Le Streghe kept going and Filippo Bandinelli was rewarded with a looping header from six yards on a corner for 5-2.
Candreva got his own brace with the last kick of the game, an angled drive after surging past defenders.