Rome (AFP) – Inter Milan crashed to a 2-1 defeat to Sassuolo at the San Siro on Saturday which ensured that Roma get to play Champions League football next season.
Matteo Politano and Domenico Berardi scored in either half with Sassuolo goalkeeper Andrea Consigli proving heroic for the visitors to severely undermine Inter’s slim hopes of elite European action.
The defeat means third-placed Roma — coached by former Sassuolo boss Eusebio Di Francesco — are sure to finish in the top four.
Roma host champions Juventus on Sunday with the Turin giants needing just a point to seal a seventh-straight Scudetto.
Inter are two points behind fourth-placed Lazio who could pull further ahead when they travel to lowly Crotone on Sunday.
Both Lazio and Inter go head-to-head next week in the Stadio Olimpico.
Sassuolo had already secured their Serie A safety and arrived in the San Siro having won their previous two away games.
Despite Luciano Spalletti’s Inter dominating possession they could not find a way through with Politano finding the way to goal after 25 minutes with a freekick under the wall.
Inter star Mauro Icardi thought he had scored but was ruled offside, with Ivan Perisic then setting up the Argentine ace only for Consigli to again clear.
Berardi blasted in the second after 72 minutes before Rafinha pulled one back five minutes later for Inter.
Consigli’s heroics continued deep into injury time to leave Inter stuck in fifth position and looking at Europa League football again next season.
In Naples, Cheick Diabate scored a late winner as relegated Benevento gave their fans a lift with a 1-0 win over Genoa in their final Serie A at home.
Goalkeeper Christian Puggioni saved midtable Genoa from conceding until four minutes to go following a run by Enrico Brignola from his own half to cross to Diabate who finished off.
It was Malian striker Diabate’s seventh goal in nine games since joining the struggling newcomers from outside Naples in January.