TURIN, Italy - Claudio Marchisio scored the winner as Juventus beat champions Inter Milan 2-1 in a bad-tempered clash at the Stadio Olimpico here on Saturday to breathe new life into the Serie A title race.
Inter's lead at the top of the table is now just four points following AC Milan's comfortable 3-0 cruise against Sampdoria earlier in the day.
But the high-profile, top-of-the-table clash here lived up to its star billing with incident aplenty as Juve finished with 10 men following Brazilian Felipe Melo's late sending off, while Inter coach Jose Mourinho was also dismissed in the first half.
Juve coach Ciro Ferrara said his team had proved a point following two straight defeats, one in the Champions League.
"These type of games are very close, you can win them or lose them but during the week we were well focused despite the fact that clearly there were some difficult days given we had just lost twice," he said.
Mourinho, unsurprisingly, refused to come out and meet the press.
After all the pre-match hype about racism Inter substitute Mario Balotelli received buckets of abuse but none of it could be described as racial.
Juve were ahead on 20 minutes as Giorgio Chiellini's header from a Diego free-kick was turned forward by Alessandro Del Piero and off Felipe Melo's thigh, wrong-footing Julio Cesar as it dribbled over the line.
The lead did not last long, though, as Inter came storming back. On 25 minutes Gianluigi Buffon beat out a Walter Samuel header from Esteban Cambiasso's free-kick but only a minute later Samuel Eto'o headed home a simple right-wing cross from Stankovic.
Juve, though, went straight up the other end and retook the lead after Julio Cesar couldn't hold Mohammed Sissoko's low shot and Marchisio swept home the rebound. - Sapa