top of page
  • Writer's pictureDag Jenkins

Lazio smash into title race

Updated: Feb 29

Game 15, Serie A

Saturday, December 7, 2019

Stadio Olimpico, Rome

Lazio Juventus 3-1

Lazio come from behind to stun Juventus and join scudetto race

A good crowd of 60,000 turned out for this much awaited game.

Juventus started better than Lazio. The Bianconeri pressed high up the field and took control of the midfield with Rodrigo Bentancur and Blaise Matuidi with Paolo Dybala creative up front.

Lazio were in difficulty with only Senad Lulic and Manuel Lazzari taking any initiative.

Dybala was the first to force the keepers into action when his curling left foot from just inside the box was palmed away by Thomas Strakosha. Then Dybala tried to score directly from a corner but Strakosha punched it away on the line. In the 25th minute Juventus scored, Dybala to Bentancur on the left who squared the ball into CR7 who tapped it from close range. Lazio 0 Juventus 1, a fair result so far.

Lazio took a while to react and Juventus almost made it two when Federico Bernardeschi went round Strakosha but too far towards the byline so he put a cross in to the far post where CR7 headed the ball strongly towards the corner but Strakosha dived low and saved brilliantly.

Lazio then finally stirred and started attacking with more conviction. In the 40th minute the visitors were forced to substitute injured Bentancur with Emre Can. The Biancocelesti equalised just before halftime. Following a corner from the left, the ball came back to Luís Alberto who put in a perfect, cutting cross which was headed in by Luíz Felipe. Lazio 1 Juventus 1 and halftime score. Lazio growing into the game and pleased with the score line.

There were no changes for the second half which started with a scare for Lazio. Strakosha messed up a pass to Francesco Acerbi and the ball went straight to Dybala at the edge of the box, "la Joya" took it a few metres forward a cracked a left foot towards goal but the Albanian keeper redeemed himself by diving to his left and pulling off a fine save.

Lazio from then on had control of the midfield and looked the more dangerous. In the 69th minute came a game changer. Luís Alberto, still inside his own half, put a brilliant ball forward to Lazzari who, although 40 metres out, only had Juan Cuadrado between him and the goal and was brought down by the Colombian. Initially the referee only booked him but then having being called by VAR and checking the pitch TV monitor he changed the colour to red. A correct decision, the foul had been dirty, intentional and Lazzari would have had a clear goal scoring opportunity. Maurizio Sarri then took off attacking midfielder Bernardeschi and put on defender Danilo.

From now on Lazio, already in the ascendancy, dominated. In the 75th minute the Biancocelesti took the lead with a fantastic goal. Luís Alberto, just over the halfway line but nearer the touchline, floated a through ball into the area where Sergej Milinkovic-Savic sublimely brought it down with his right foot and with his left beat Szczesny with a powerful low shot on the far post. A superbly taken goal. Lazio 2 Juventus 1.

Luís Alberto then went off a minute later and on came Marco Parolo to give Lazio more defensive cover.

In the 79th minute Lazio could have made it three. Ciro Immobile teed up Joaquin Correa who only had Wojciech Szczesny to beat, he went round him but, before he could shoot, was pulled down by the Polish keeper. Penalty to Lazio to close the game. Immobile stepped up but his spot kick was too central and parried by Szczesny, the ball came back to Ciro but again the keeper produced another excellent save to deny the Lazio striker.

Having been given a flicker of hope Juventus then desperately pushed forward but without lucidity and did not have any clear chances. Meanwhile Lazio had acres of space on the counter attack. They made one of these chances count in the 95th and last minute, they found themselves in three against one defender and Lazzari only had Szczesny to beat but managed to hit the keeper, the ball bounced back to Felipe Caicedo who stopped it and hammered a left footed volley into the back of the net. Lazio 3 Juventus 1. Absolute mayhem in the Stadio Olimpico and final whistle.

A fine performance by Lazio who finally managed to defeat the "Old Lady" at home in a league game after sixteen years. A long wait but the present also said Lazio were finally title contenders too.

Who played for Lazio

Substitutes: Proto, Guerrieri, Vavro, Bastos, Jorge Silva, Jony, André Anderson

Manager: S. Inzaghi

Who played for Juventus

Szczesny, Cuadrado, Bonucci, de Ligt, Alex Sandro, Bentancur (40' Can), Pjanic, Matuidi, Bernardeschi (71' Danilo), Ronaldo, Dybala (79' Higuain)

Substitutes: Buffon, Pinsoglio, Rugani, Demiral, De Sciglio, Rabiot, Muratore, Portanova, Pjaca

Manager: Sarri

Referee: Fabbri

Goals: 25' Ronaldo, 45+1 Luiz Felipe, 75' Milinkovic-Savic, 90+5' Caicedo



bottom of page