Second-placed Inter Milan needed second-half goals from Achraf Hakimi and leading scorer Romelu Lukaku to overcome stubborn resistance from Spezia as it beat the Serie A newcomers 2-1 on Sunday.

Inter’s sixth successive league win kept Antonio Conte’s side one point behind AC Milan, who won 2-1 at Sassuolo. Inter, who has lost only once in the league this season, has 30 points from 13 games.

Conte conceded that the fixture marathon was taking its toll.

“This is our sixth league win in a row and we need this kind of consistency. We knew the match would be complicated against a very organised team. We didn’t give much away but we didn’t create much either, in the first half,” he said.

“But you have to remember that this is the ninth match of this series (since the last international break) and there is a bit of tiredness creeping in, there’s no point in hiding it. But we have to…

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