top of page
  • Writer's pictureSimon Basten

November 20, 1988: Lazio Verona 3-1

Updated: May 14

Victory at last

 

After five consecutive draws Lazio finally manage to win their first Serie A match since 1984.





The season so far

 

The previous season Lazio had finally been promoted to Serie A after three very problematic years. Manager Eugenio Fascetti had quarrelled with President Gian Marco Calleri and had been sacked in July. Giuseppe Materazzi was called in to replace him.

 

In the summer transfer window, the club had gone through a mini revolution. In came three foreign players: forwards Ruben Sosa (Real Saragozza) and Gustavo Dezotti (Newell’s Old Boys) plus defender Nelson Gutierrez (River Plate). Other arrivals included midfielders Andrea Icardi (Atalanta) and Claudio Sclosa (Pisa), as well as defender Marco Monti (Virescit Bergamo). Leaving Lazio were Paolo Monelli (Bari), Domenico Caso (Latina), Vincenzo Esposito (Atalanta), Antonio Schillaci (Messina) and Giuseppe Galderisi (Milan, end of loan). In the autumn Luca Brunetti (Taranto), Giancarlo Camolese (Padova) and Gabriele Savino (Brescia) also left.

 

Serie A started late due to the Seoul Olympic Games, so in order to fill up the calendar there were two Coppa Italia group stages. Lazio were paired with Milan, Pescara, Messina, Campobasso and Licata. The Biancocelesti lost their first game to Pescara and their last to Milan, but won the middle three, arriving third and qualifying for the next round. In this second phase they had to play Fiorentina, Inter and Udinese. They won with the former and the latter and drew against the Nerazzurri, topping their group ahead of Fiorentina. A very good start to the season.

 

In the first five games of the Campionato, Lazio drew all five, including good draws away to Milan and Napoli. They had yet to win their first game in Serie A. The last time they had won was almost exactly four years ago, against Como for 3-2 on November 25, 1984.

 

The match: Sunday, November 20, 1988, Stadio Olimpico, Rome

 

Lazio started magnificently. After just 60 seconds, Ruben Sosa on the counter attack managed to pass a great ball to Antonio Rizzolo in complete solitude on the edge of the box. The young centre forward controlled the ball with difficulty but was able to dribble past Giovanni Cervone and score. 

 

Verona reacted and in the 17th minute Mario Bortolazzi hit the crossbar from 25 metres with a powerful shot. The Gialloblu pressed the Biancocelesti who were in great difficulty and in the 31st minute equalised. Bortolazzi took a free kick on the right and Claudio Caniggia headed the ball in while the Lazio defenders were watching the events. 

 

In the second half Lazio seemed to have found the right key to unlock the Verona defence. In the 52nd minute Gabriele Pin crossed a ball from the left and Rizzolo headed the ball in for Lazio’s second. Verona seemed tired and the Biancocelesti made it three in the 79th minute. Bertolazzi took a free kick from the right close to the corner kick, ball to Roberto Soldà outside the box but central, his shot was parried by the Lazio defenders and Ruben Sosa had an open field laid out in front of him. The Uruguayan raced towards the Verona penalty box, followed by Stefano Pioli who could not catch him; once inside, Sosa was fouled by the keeper but the ball reached Pin who avoided the penalty being given by tapping the ball in. Lazio 3, Verona 1, game over.

 

Who played for Lazio

 

Martina, Marino, Icardi, Pin, Gregucci, Gutierrez, Dezotti, Di Canio, Rizzolo (55’ Acerbis), Sclosa, Ruben Sosa (80’ Beruatto)

Substitutes: Fiori, Piscedda, Muro

Manager: Materazzi

 

Who played for Verona

 

Cervone, Berthold, Volpecina, Soldà, Pioli, Iachini, Caniggia, Troglio, Galderisi, Bortolazzi, Pacione.

Substitutes: Zuccher, Terracciano, Marangon II, Bonetti I, Gasparini.

Manager: Bagnoli.

 

Referee: Di Cola

 

Goals: 1’ Rizzolo, 31’ Caniggia, 52’ Rizzolo, 70’ Pin



What happened next

 

The Biancocelesti did not have an easy year. They struggled a bit and at the end of the first half of the season they were 14th with a two-point cushion over the relegation zone. They more or less stayed that way for most of the second round of fixtures. With two games to the end of the Campionato they were one point clear of Torino and Pescara. The three teams were fighting to stay in Serie A, two of them would go down. Lazio needed to beat Sampdoria at home to have any chance of avoiding the drop. A rare goal from Dezotti allowed the Biancocelesti to go and play for a draw in the last game at Ascoli. Since the Bianconeri also needed a point to avoid relegation, a predictable goalless draw allowed both teams to survive.

 

Lazio had potential, but had an over defensive attitude. This translated into 19 draws (11 0-0s!!!) and Materazzi started to be called Mr. 0-0. With only 23 goals scored one really could not ask for more.

 

The highlight of the season was the 1-0 win in the derby with a Paolo Di Canio goal. The last time the Biancocelesti had won a derby was in 1979.

 

Dezotti had the most appearances (38), Ruben Sosa was the top goal scorer (12).


Lazio 1988-89

Competition

Played

Won

Drawn

Lost

Goals scored

Serie A

34

5

19

10

23

Coppa Italia

10

6

1

3

17

Total

44

11

20

13

40

Top five appearances

Player

Total

Serie A

Coppa Italia

Ruben Sosa

43

33

10

Dezotti

38

29

9

Beruatto

37

28

9

Di Canio

37

30

7

Monti

36

29

7

Pin

36

27

9

Top five goal scorers

Player

Total

Serie A

Coppa Italia

Ruben Sosa

12

8

4

Dezotti

9

3

6

Gregucci

5

4

1

Rizzolo

5

3

2

Pin

3

2

1

Let's talk about Antonio Rizzolo


Source Wikipedia

Antonio Rizzolo was born in Orvieto on April 22, 1969. He grew up at Lazio and played in all of the various youth teams. Thanks to his goals the Biancocelesti won the 1986-87 Primavera championship. He debuted in Serie B on March 22 1987 in the game lost against Catania. It was the legendary -9 season and he made five appearances. He was also on the bench for the famous games against Vicenza, when Giuliano Fiorini scored the winning goal seven minutes from the end saving Lazio from Serie C, and in the playoff against Campobasso when Fabio Poli scored the winning goal.

 

In 1987-88 he made more appearances, 14. The Biancocelesti had signed Paolo Monelli and Giuseppe Galderisi as forwards, but the latter went into a scoring drought and lost his place. Rizzolo was promoted and scored 3 goals in the last five games (Udinese, Brescia and Parma).

 

His career was launched and in the first Serie A games of 1988-89 he was doing so well that pundits started speaking of Nazionale for him. He scored against Napoli and a brace at home vs Verona. But then he stopped. He was not helped by a relatively weak team but his contribution was minimal. At the end of the season he was sold to Pescara and for the rest of his career rarely stayed more than a season with a team. After Pescara he signed for Atalanta but played just one game before leaving for Padova. Then a year at Palermo, Lecce (on loan), two seasons back in Sicily, Reggiana, Ascoli, Ternana, Albacete in Spain, Avellino and later on Sestrese, Lecco, Pisa, Latina and finished his career with Cisco Roma and Monterotondo. Many Serie B teams and later on Serie C to finish in Serie D.

 

He made one appearance for Italy U20 (one goal) and three with the Under-21s (one goal).

 

Once he stopped playing, he became a manager coaching youth teams of Arezzo and Ascoli and was assistant to Angelo Gregucci at Alessandria and Salernitana. In 2019 he was manager of the Salernitana Primavera and in 2021-22 of Sampdoria under 18s.

 

Rizzolo looked as if he would be the Lazio centre forward for years, but it did not work out. The talent was there though.


Lazio Career

Season

Total appearances (goals)

Serie A

Serie B

Coppa Italia

1986-87

5

-

5

-

1987-88

15 (3)

14 (3)

1

1988-89

30 (5)

23 (3)

-

5 (2)

Total

50 (8)

23 (3)

19 (3)

6 (2)

Sources


Comentarios


Los comentarios se han desactivado.
bottom of page