top of page
  • Writer's pictureSimon Basten

Crying game doesn’t always work

Updated: Apr 6

Coppa Italia, Quarterfinals

Wednesday, January 10, 2024

Stadio Olimpico, Rome

Lazio Roma 1-0

Despite the usual Roma theatrics, Lazio win the derby and move on to the Coppa Italia semi-finals

Official SS Lazio photo

The team

Ivan Provedel had a temperature, so Maurizio Sarri decided to send Christos Mandas into the arena, the Greek goalkeeper who had impressed in training. Mandas is the first Greek ever to play for Lazio in an official competition. Alessio Romagnoli was back in the centre of defence, Manuel Lazzari right back, Danilo Cataldi playmaker and Matias Vecino in the starting 11 for the first time in a while.

Official SS Lazio photo

First half

Just one thing to note in the first half. Lazzari in the 24th minute sprinted down the right wing, dribbled a couple of players, got into the box, moved the ball to his left foot and tried a shot, walled by Gianluca Mancini.

C’est tout.

Second half

José Mourinho was forced to substitute Paulo Dybala in the interval, injured once more, and in came Lorenzo Pellegrini.

In the 48th minute Felipe Anderson got the ball and raced down the right wing, close to the byline he sent a cross into the middle of the box, Vecino anticipated Taty Castellanos and headed the ball towards the top left corner, Rui Patricio managed to get a hand to it and Rick Karsdorp cleared into corner.

Cataldi went to take the corner but it was a quick one-two with Felipetto. He crossed low into the box, Vecino deflected the ball towards Castellanos who was fouled by Dean Huijsen. Daniele Orsato chose to play on, but he was promptly called by VAR who underlined his mistake. As a consequence, penalty for Lazio. No Ciro Immobile so it was up to Mattia Zaccagni to take the spotkick, Rui Patricio chose the wrong angle and too early, ball on the other side and Lazio 1 Roma 0.

The Giallorossi were in a state of shock and Lazio almost doubled on two occasions. In the 57th minute, Zaccagni on the left to Felipe Anderson, ball to Vecino in the box who ran past Nicola Zalewski but the ball slipped away and when he did get to shoot Rui Patricio was on him and managed to parry. Thirty seconds later Felipe Anderson to Lazzari on the right. The right back flew down the wing and once close to the byline opted for a low ball towards the edge of the box where Vecino was arriving. Big whack from the Uruguayan, wide.

At this point enter the subs. For Roma first Karsdorp and Zalewski went out and in came Sardar Azmoun and Leonardo Spinazzola, then Stephen El Shaarawy for Edoardo Bove and Andrea Belotti for Huijsen. Sarri changed three all in one go: Nicolò Rovella, Pedro and Luca Pellegrini for Cataldi, Zaccagni and Lazzari. Later on Gustav Isaksen substituted Castellanos.

In the 82nd minute, one two Isaksen-Felipe Anderson, ball from the Dane to Pedro on the left just inside the box, his shot though was too central.

Five minutes later the only chance created by Roma in the 102 minutes of the match. Spinazzola tried a high ball into the box, Azmoun passed to Belotti, Mandas managed to parry and then when Pellegrini was about to tap it in he got a hand to the ball and smacked it out for a corner.

During injury time first Pedro was sent off for receiving two yellow cards, one for wasting time and another for a retaliatory foul ( Leandro Paredes had tried to strangle him, unseen by ref and VAR), then Azmoun got a red for hitting Rovella. In the meantime Lukaku tried a bicycle kick which looked spectacular but the ball was not even close to the goal.

Game over, Lazio in the semis, Roma were forced to go home with their tail between their legs and with another red card after the final whistle, this time for Mancini.

After a way too tense first half, Lazio tried harder in the second and brought home the qualification a lot more easily than the score showed. Roma null, one shot at goal in the entire match, just long balls to Lukaku and theatrics which this time did not work.

Who played for Lazio


Mandas, Lazzari (67' Pellegrini), Patric, Romagnoli, Marusic, Guendouzi, Cataldi (67' Rovella), Vecino, Felipe Anderson, Castellanos (77' Isaksen), Zaccagni (67' Pedro).

Substitutes: Sepe, Magro, Casale, Gila, Hysaj, Luis Alberto, Basic, Kamada, Sana Fernandes.

Manager: Sarri


Who played for Roma


Rui Patricio, Kristensen, Mancini, Huijsen (81' Belotti); Karsdorp (58' Azmoun), Bove (76' El Shaarawy), Paredes, Cristante, Zalewski (58' Spinazzola), Dybala (46' L. Pellegrini), Lukaku.

Substitutes: Marin, Svilar, Llorente, Celik, Kumbulla, Pagano, Pisilli.

Manager: Mourinho


Referee: Orsato


Goal: 51’ Zaccagni (pen)


Booked: Cristante (R), Castellanos (L), Guendouzi (L), Mancini (R), Pellegrini (L), Pedro (L)


Sent off: Pedro (L), Azmoun (R), Mancini (R)


Commenting has been turned off.
bottom of page