Mauro Icardi had the video assistant referee to thank for allowing his 26th Serie A goal of the season to stand in Inter's 2-1 victory over Chievo.
The 25-year-old Argentine, who is hot on the heels of Lazio's Ciro Immobile in the hunt for this season's Capocannoniere, thought his 50th-minute strike had been ruled out for offside but referee Paolo Valeri consulted replays before confirming its legitimacy, setting Inter on course for a crucial win.
Luciano Spalletti's men had been disappointing prior to that moment and were grateful to goalkeeper Samir Handanovic for keeping them in the game at the Marcantonio Bentegodi, where Chievo battled hard for points they desperately need to stave off the threat of relegation.
But after Icardi's goal was allowed to stand, Inter turned on the style and Ivan Perisic's 61st-minute strike was a reminder of how lethal the Nerazzurri can be when they are in confident mood.
The result keeps Inter one point behind fourth-placed Lazio in the race for Champions League qualification with four games left to play, while Chievo - who grabbed a late consolation through substitute Mariusz Stepinski - sit 16th, two points clear of the bottom three.
Finisce qui. Siamo stati in partita fino alla fine. Siamo andati sotto di due gol e non l'abbiamo pareggiata per un soffio. Combattenti! Questo siamo stati! E lo saremo fino all'ultimo secondo dell'ultima partita! #ChievoInter pic.twitter.com/GGl4CYqB4Y— A.C. ChievoVerona (@ACChievoVerona) April 22, 2018
The game burst into life after 12 minutes when Manuel Pucciarelli crashed a powerful, bouncing drive onto the post from 25 yards before Inter immediately countered and put Perisic clean through on goal but he lobbed both goalkeeper and crossbar with his shot.
Emanuele Giaccherini's rising shot from just inside the penalty area would have crept under the bar if Handanovic had not pulled off an acrobatic save, palming the ball over at full stretch.
Inter's Yann Karamoh dragged a shot just wide from the edge of the box before Perisic broke down the left and squared towards Icardi, who would surely have broken the deadlock had Ivan Radovanovic not slid in to turn the ball over the crossbar.
Handanovic was called into action twice more before half-time, first when Fabrizio Cacciatore controlled the ball with his chest and unleashed a left-footed shot from inside the penalty area that forced the Slovenian goalkeeper into a difficult low save, and again when he parried away Pucciarelli's angled effort.
The breakthrough arrived in controversial fashion, Icardi rolling the ball into the net after Stefano Sorrentino saved twice from Marcelo Brozovic only to see an offside flag had been raised.
Referee Valeri consulted the video assistant and judged that, although Icardi was offside when Brozovic took his first shot, he was not interfering with play and recovered his position before giving Inter the lead.
There was no doubt over Inter's second, which came from Karamoh's break down the right flank and an unselfish bit of play from Rafinha, who presented Perisic with a straightforward finish from close range and the Croatian made no mistake, slamming the ball into the bottom-left corner.
Inter slowed the pace of the game in the final 20 minutes and when Chievo threatened to pull one back through Nicola Rigoni, cool-headed defender Milan Skriniar was there to block his shot.
Stepinski pounced on a late lapse in concentration to pull one back for Chievo in the 90th minute and Nenad Tomovic was painfully close to levelling it up in the last action of the game, but Spalletti's men clung on to head home with a precious three points.
Key Opta stats:
- Prior to Mauro Icardi this season, the last Inter player to score 26+ goals in a single Serie A season was Angelillo in 1958-59.
- Ivan Perisic has scored 11 goals in the current Serie A season, equaling his record of goals in a single season in top-five European leagues (11 - 2016-17).
- Icardi (eight) and Perisic (four) have scored 12 of Inter's last 14 goals in Serie A.
|Fan shows off Monk face tattoo on bottom|
|Bayern Munich chief Hoeness rules out spending spree|
|Fury to take on Albanian Seferi in Manchester next month|
|Mourinho mind games won´t distract from Manchester United´s paused progress|
|My motivation is intact - Ranieri open to offers following Nantes exit|
|Shields would probably have made All Blacks squad - Hansen|
|Willian fuels rift talk by hiding Conte with emojis in cup photo|
|Marquez extends lead at Le Mans as Dovizioso crashes again|
|Top-six mentality a boost to England´s World Cup hopes – Southgate|
|Dominant Svitolina retains in Rome as Halep sustains injury scare|
|I´d play for free! - Fifita desperate for State of Origin call-up|
|Plea satisfied with Nice exit as big changes beckon|
|Boateng open to leaving Bayern for move abroad|
|Napoli slam ´shameful and offensive´ Juventus celebrations|
|Red Star´s open-top bus goes up in flames|
|Klopp rejects Liverpool´s Champions League final underdogs tag|
|Root trusts batting form to ´click´ for England|
|Matic wants Man Utd to back Mourinho in transfer market|
|Walker out with eye socket fracture following Melbourne-Manly brawl|
|Don´t try it at home! - LeBron wows with game three passing|
|Dragons restore two-point lead, Sharks battle past Bulldogs|
|Any club would want Buffon, says PSG president|
|Villarreal renew Calleja contract after Europa League qualification|
|Talisca heading to Premier League, hints Besiktas boss|
|Celtics ´needed to get our butts whooped´ by Cavs, says Rozier|
|Bayern should have had a penalty, admits Boateng|
|NBA great Bill Russell released from hospital|
|When I play I´m Luca, not Zidane – Zinedine´s son distances himself from father|
|Barzagli: Buffon the greatest of all time|
|Indians ace Kluber becomes first in AL to seven wins|
|MLS Review: Two-goal Villa inspires NYC rout, Timbers stay hot|
|Kuznetsov sets Capitals´ playoff points record|
|Stevenson-Jack showdown ends in majority draw|
|Galatasaray win 21st Turkish title on final day|
|Cavaliers rout Celtics to cut series deficit to 2-1|
|Harvick holds off Suarez to win All-Star race and $1m|
|All Blacks name three new faces for France Tests|
|Mo Salah 15 years behind Cristiano Ronaldo – Klopp|
|Jaguares extend winning streak with Bulls thrashing|
|Nobody is bigger than PSG, says Al-Khelaifi amid doubts over Neymar|
|Warrington targets Frampton after Selby upset|
|Zidane says Real Madrid are ready for Champions League final|
|Heynckes: Bayern aren´t bad losers after DFB-Pokal snub|
|Everything was positive - Emery leaves PSG satisfied|
|Wise, Leishman tied for Byron Nelson lead|
|Torres, Iniesta share gift of good decisions - Simeone|
|Arrivederci Buffon - The Juventus´ greats remarkable career in numbers|
|Favre leaves Nice as Dortmund post awaits|
|´Extraordinary´ Juventus deserved Serie A title - Allegri|
|Warrington upsets bloodied Selby to secure world title|
|Sweden batter USA, Swiss roll on to gold medal match|
|Zverev battles past Cilic to extend winning streak|
|It was a penalty - Kovac acknowledges Frankfurt´s good fortune ahead of Bayern move|
|Ligue 1: Depay fires Lyon into Champions League as Troyes go down|
|Tigers tear Rhinos to shreds as Saints stay clear at the summit|
|Mourinho criticises Chelsea long-ball tactics in FA Cup final|
|Caen 0 Paris Saint-Germain 0: Stalemate closes Emery tenure as Caen survive|
|Villarreal 2 Real Madrid 2: Luca´s debut misjudgement costs Los Blancos|
|Conte reaffirms Chelsea commitment and hints at Italy offer|
|Leicester agree €20m deal for Porto´s Pereira|
|Bayern Munich 1 Eintracht Frankfurt 3: Controversial Kovac win denies new club double delight|
|I am a serial winner, Conte declares after Chelsea´s FA Cup glory|
|Courtois delighted to dispel doubts with FA Cup triumph|
|FA Cup win was to save Chelsea season - Cahill|
|Brilliant Hazard ensures Conte´s serial-winner status remains intact|
|Knight Riders cruise into the IPL play-offs|
|Mourinho: I can imagine what people would say if my team played like Chelsea|
|Mourinho: Lukaku chose not to start FA Cup final|
|Hazard shies away from future talk after Chelsea´s FA Cup success|
|Today is your moment - Juventus legend Del Piero pays tribute to Buffon|