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  • Writer's pictureSimon Basten

Ibanez one of us

Updated: Jan 11

2022-23 Season

Game 27

March 19, 2023

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Stadio Olimpico, Rome

Lazio Roma 1-0

Ibanez, Lazio’s undercover agent, does it again and is decisive in the Biancocelesti’s win in the derby. Great goal from Zaccagni.

The teams

Maurizio Sarri is forced to leave out Matias Vecino, suspended, and Ciro Immobile, injured, hence the three up front are the “light” forwards and Danilo Cataldi the playmaker. Ivan Provedel had a temperature on the eve of the match, but the fever dropped by lunchtime so he is regularly in goal.

Jose Mourinho surprisingly puts in Andrea Belotti instead of Tammy Abraham and has to leave Nemanja Matic on the bench since he has only just recovered from flu. All eyes on Roger Ibanez, his mistakes have already cost Roma two derbies.

The match

Lazio immediately take control of the game, Roma just stay put behind defending with 9 players. As a consequence the possibility of finding gaps in the Giallorossi wall is very difficult.

The first major event is the booking of Ibanez in the 9th minute, for a foul on Felipe Anderson. At last a referee who acts on bookable offences in the first minutes of a match.

In the 18th minute the first half chance of the game comes with a shot from outside the box from Georginio Wijnaldum which is only slightly high. A minute later Mattia Zaccagni goes off on the left, ball in the box to Felipe Anderson who, after trying to get past a few Roma defenders, attempts a shot which however comes out weak and is safely saved by Rui Patricio. Zaccagni in the 29th minute does it again but this time moves towards the centre and from outside the box shoots. Rui Patricio parries.

The match changer arrives in the 32nd minute. Paulo Dybala from the right, in Lazio’s half, sends a long pass to Ibanez on the left but the Roma defender fumbles and Sergej Milinkovic-Savic intercepts. The Brazilian fouls the Serb and the referee books him for the second time. Roma down to ten men.

In the 37th minute Zaccagni crosses for Milinkovic-Savic outside the box. The Serb sees a gap and tries a difficult scissor-kick. Wide.

Towards the end of the first half, mass confrontation between the two benches and Davide Massa sends off two members of staff.

Second half

Roma send in Diego Llorente for Dybala in the interval. Sarri tells the team to be patient. “A gap is bound to open up”, he says in the changing rooms.

Without their most important player, Roma fall back even further at the beginning of the second half. Lazio patiently pass the ball around in the hope of finding an opening. In the 53rd minute Luis Alberto goes for the big shot from outside the box, Rui Patricio tips the ball over into corner, not without considerable difficulty. Luis Alberto tries another couple of times but the first goes out and the second is walled. In the 62nd minute Felipe Anderson to Pedro who runs into the box on the right and from an impossible angle shoots. The Roma goalkeeper sends the ball into corner. The subsequent corner sees Luis Alberto crossing the ball which bounces off Chris Smalling and reaches Felipe Anderson right in front of the goalkeeper. The Brazilian immediately volleys towards goal but right in Rui Patricio's face. The linesman lifts his flag up for offside, but had Felipetto scored VAR would have given the goal.

In the 64th minute Elseid Hysaj on the left passes to Luis Alberto who immediately gives it to Felipe Anderson. Chip to Zaccagni who finds the gap and runs towards the Roma goal. His shot is low and precise, Rui Patricio sees the ball go into the net. 1-0 for Lazio.

In the 67th minute Roma have a free kick on the left. Lorenzo Pellegrini sends the ball in, Gianluca Mancini’s header is saved by Provedel. The ball is going into corner but Smalling sends it back and Nicolò Casale scores in his own goal. Despair for Lazio fans, but after a VAR review the English defender is judged to be offside so the goal is disallowed.

Roma wake up and get a little more determined, but Lazio are in complete control and try to put the game to sleep. The Giallorossi try to put on some pressure and in the 77th minute a Leonardo Spinazzola cross is parried into corner by Provedel.

Roma though are totally incapable of creating anything else, Lazio win the second derby of the season as well for the first time since 2011 (a double 2-1) and for the first time since 1972-73 manage to win both without conceding a goal.

The aftermath

At the end of the contest there is a massive confrontation on the pitch between the players and Massa sends off Adam Marusic and Bryan Cristante. However Mancini should also be shown a red card for hitting Marusic.

Strong words are also said in the tunnel (“the Roma players always talk before the match. You must never talk because if you do and you lose … “ said Luis Alberto) and near the changing rooms where President Claudio Lotito and Mourinho have a verbal clash.

A note on Roma

In 1997 after seven minutes Giuseppe Favalli got (too harshly) sent off in a derby. Sven Goran Eriksson, present at today's game, thought that the probability that Roma would score was now a lot higher so there was no point in taking off a forward and reducing Lazio’s chances of scoring. He thus substituted a midfield player. Lazio won 3-1.

Mourinho’s decision to take off Dybala meant that after Lazio scored, Roma did not have the necessary power nor talent to create chances. A dismal performance was hence made even worse. I am sure Sven would be pleased to give Jose a quick tactical lesson.

Official SS Lazio photo

Lazio’s undercover agent

It is now the third time Ibanez does us a favour. Long live Ibanez!!!

Who played for Lazio

Provedel, Marusic, Casale, Romagnoli, Hysaj, Milinkovic-Savic, Cataldi, Luis Alberto, Pedro (88' Basic), Felipe Anderson, Zaccagni (81' Cancellieri).

Substitutes: Maximiano, Adamonis, Magro, Gila, Patric, Lazzari, Radu, Fares, Floriani M., Pellegrini, Marcos Antonio, Immobile, Romero.

Manager: Sarri

Who played for Roma

Rui Patricio, Mancini, Smalling, Ibanez, Zalewski, Cristante, Wijnaldum (67' Matic), Spinazzola, Pellegrini (84' Solbakken), Dybala (46' Llorente, 78' El Shaarawy).

Substitutes: Svilar, Boer, Celik, Camara, Bove, Volpato, Tahirovic.

Manager: Mourinho (Foti was on the bench because Mourinho was suspended)

Referee: Massa

Goal: 64' Zaccagni

Bookings: Ibanez, Luis Alberto, Romagnoli, Cristante, Mancini, Cancellieri, Basic

Sent off: Ibanez, Marusic, Cristante


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