Lazio's Miroslav Klose (right) stretches to try and get to the ball before Javier Zanetti of Inter Milan. Photo: Reuters
Miroslav Klose struck a superb late winner as Lazio beat Inter Milan 1-0 on Saturday to boost Juventus' hopes of extending its Serie A lead before Christmas.
Inter started its 17th match of the campaign only four points behind champions Juventus at the top of Serie A. However, Andrea Stramaccioni's men were dominated throughout before missing several chances late in the game.
Stramaccioni's anger showed as he walked off the pitch following a fifth defeat of the campaign which means Juventus can now extend its lead over the Nerazzurri to seven points if it beats Atalanta in Turin.
Lazio had beaten Inter only twice in its last 15 league games although one of those wins was last time out at the Olympic Stadium in March.
And with Lazio unbeaten at home since a shock 1-0 reverse to Genoa at the end of October - combined with Inter's poor away form of late - Vladimir Petkovic had every reason to believe the Biancocelesti could produce a result.
But the visitors created few chances in the opening half and, while Stramaccioni tinkered with his formation at the interval, Lazio remained in control.
When Klose came down in the area after a tackle by Samuel, Lazio saw its claims for a penalty waved away for a second time.
Klose's persistence, however, was to pay off, the German finally beating Samir Handanovic with a well-placed strike from the edge of the area.
Inter rallied and in the dying moments caused panic in the Lazio area but the hosts held on for a win which left them in fourth but level on points with third-placed Napoli.