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  • Writer's pictureSimon Basten

January 6, 1955: Lazio Inter 3-2

A much needed win


Great game and great win for Lazio who put Inter in continuous difficulty




Source Wikipedia

The season so far


The previous season Lazio had arrived 11th. After an excellent first half of the season where the Biancocelesti were eighth but just four points off fourth place, in the second half they only earned 12 points and fell back. Even if they sank in the table, they were never really in danger of relegation, always maintaining a comfortable cushion between themselves and the drop. Manager Mario Sperone had been sacked after 24 games, replaced by Federico Allasio.


Allasio had been confirmed and in the summer transfer window some interesting players had arrived: goalkeeper Giuseppe Zibetti (Brescia), historic Juventus defender Carlo Parola and Attilio Giovannini (Inter), midfielder Renzo Sassi (Legnano) plus forward and another Juventus legend John Hansen. Leaving Lazio were Lucidio Sentimenti IV (Vicenza) and Serafino Montanari who had decided to retire. The club sent a number of players out on loan: Roberto Lovati (just bought from Monza, was sent to Torino), Renato Spurio (Monza), Franco Carradori (Palermo) and Paolo Bettolini (Monza). Enrique Flamini left to play for Terracina.


Lazio had a terrible start to the season, In the first seven games they managed one win (against Fiorentina), a draw in the derby and the rest were losses. They were last. Allasio was sacked and the duo George Raynor-Roberto Copernico were called in to rescue the season. Raynor had done very well as head coach for Sweden and the previous year he had, briefly, managed Juventus.


With the new coaches the situation had not really improved that much. They were still last, but in the company of Pro Patria and Spal. This year in Serie A, two teams would be relegated to Serie B.


The match: Thursday, January 6, 1955, Stadio Olimpico, Rome


Lazio began the game brilliantly putting Inter in great difficulty. The players changed positions continually creating great headaches for the Nerazzurri and they were constantly on the attack. Giorgio Ghezzi had made a number of important saves but in the 28th minute Lazio scored. Cross into the box, Hansen and Fulvio Nesti went for the ball which fell to the feet of Pasquale Vivolo. The Lazio forward dribbled past Giovanni Giacomazzi and as Ghezzi was coming out to face him, he scored.


The Biancocelesti insisted but it was Inter who equalised in the 35th minute. Long pass for Marco Savioni then to Sergio Brighenti on the left. He went forward, feigned a shot and passed to Gino Armano who volleyed the ball into the goal. Two minutes later Attilio Giovannini to Sigvard Lofgren who saw Hansen was unmarked on the right. The former Juventus player got the ball, moved towards the centre and then, close to the penalty spot, beat Ghezzi. At the end of the first half Lazio 2 Inter 1.


Source Lazio Wiki

In the second half, the Biancocelesti, having played at a very fast pace in the first 45 minutes, started to slow down and the Neorazzurri took courage. But despite the pressure Giuseppe Zibetti did not have much work to do. In the 68th minute the Lazio goalkeeper kicked the ball up in the air, Viviolo acrobatically collected it on the left and volleyed for the incoming Renzo Burini. Great run with the ball and just as he was being caught up by Giorgio Bernardin and with Ghezzi coming out of his goal to face him, Burini aimed high and scored Lazio’s third.


In the 87th minute, Brighenti headed towards Armano who with a spectacular acrobatic volley beat Zibetti. The Neroazzurri even got close to their third but the Biancoceleste defence held their guard.


Great win for Lazio.


Who played for Lazio


Manager: Raynor

TD: Copernico


Who played for Inter


Ghezzi, Giacomazzi, Padaluzzi, Neri, Bernardin, Nesti, Armano, Mazza, Brighenti, Skoglund, Savioni.

Manager: Foni

 

Referee: Agnolin

 

Goals: 28’ Vivolo, 35’ Armano, 37’ Hansen, 68’ Burini, 87’ Armano



What happened next


In the second half of the season Lazio improved considerably. They beat Juventus, won the derby, and slowly started to climb up the ladder. With four games to the end of the season they had a six-point cushion over 17th place and in the end arrived 12th. A miracle considering that after nine games they were last on three points. A big hand came from Zibetti who was really miraculous at times, and John Hansen. His 15 goals were fundamental.


The players with most appearances this season were Burini, Sentimenti V and Giovannini with 31.


Lazio 1954-55

Competition

Played

Won

Drawn

Lost

Goals scored

Serie A

34

11

8

15

41

Top five appearances

Player

Serie A

Sentimenti V

31

Burini

31

Giovannini

31

Bredesen

29

Vivolo

28

Top five goal scorers

Player

Serie A

Hansen

15

Burini

8

Bredesen

7

Vivolo

6

Lofgren

2

Let's talk about John Hansen


Source Lazio Wiki

John Angelo Valdemar Østergaard Hansen, known simply as John Hansen, was born in Copenhagen on June 24, 1924. He began his footballing career with BK Frem in the amateur only Danish league. He played left inside wing, was a great header of the ball and could shoot with both feet equally powerfully. Despite being very famous in his homeland (he even won the Danish league in 1944 and was top scorer in 1948) it was only when he participated in the 1948 Olympic Games that the world got to know him. He scored seven goals in four games as Denmark won the bronze medal. In the match against Italy, he scored four of the five goals that knocked the Italians out of the tournament. The rise to fame meant a professional contract was waiting for him, hence the end of his international career, since only amateurs played for the Danish national team.

 

In 1948 he signed for Juventus despite initial negotiations with Torino. As a Bianconero he played for six seasons appearing in 189 matches with 124 goals. He won the scudetto in 1949-50 and 1951-52. He is considered to be one of the best players Juve has ever had. He had a few difficulties at first since he was not used to the Italian way of playing, but in 1949 another member of that Olympic team was signed: Karl Aage Praest. Praest was a fast winger who excelled in crosses, exactly what Hansen needed. He scored 28 goals in 37 games. In 1950 another Danish player joined Juventus, Karl Aage Hansen, and the three Danes played beautifully together. He scored another 30 goals in 1951-52 and was top scorer in the Bianconeri’s victorious campaign.

 

In 1954 Hansen signed for Lazio. He stayed only a year but managed to score 15 goals in 27 matches giving a helping hand to a team that after 9 games was last with just three points.

 

At the end of the season in Rome he went back to Denmark but because he had played professionally, he was not allowed to play in the league. He did play exhibition matches that attracted a considerable number of spectators. The ban was lifted in 1958, even if they did have to serve a two-year quarantine, so Hansen was able to go back to BK Frem where he played until he retired in 1960.

 

During his ban, Hansen was manager at BK Frem together with Erling Sorensen. In 1969 he was asked to be head selector for the Danish national team for one year and he accepted. When his contract expired, he refused to renew it, urging the Danish Football Association to get a proper coach. Rudi Strittich was chosen.

 

Hansen died in Copenhagen on January 12, 1990.

 

He is probably one of the best Danish players of all time and certainly one of Juve’s best. He arrived at Lazio at the end of his career and he was marred by injury that did not allow him to train properly. Still, he gave everything he could to the team. He was perhaps not all that skilful, but always knew how to be in the right place at the right time, and that is fundamental for a centre forward.


Lazio Career

Season

Appearances

Goals

1954-55

27

15

Sources




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