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  • Writer's pictureSimon Basten

One step closer

Updated: Jun 6, 2023

2022-23 season

Game 36

May 21 2023

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Dacia Arena, Udine

Udinese Lazio 0-1

An Immobile penalty allows Lazio to beat Udinese and now Champions League is there for the taking

The teams

Maurizio Sarri is forced to leave Marcos Antonio in Rome as well as Luca Pellegrini but at least Matias Vecino is back in the team and can be placed in the centre of midfield. Lazio look very tired but a win in Udine, also in the light of Inter’s loss at Napoli and a possible 12 point docking for Juventus, would be very, very welcome.

The match

It is a very fast game but not a lot happens. Udinese are potentially dangerous but the Biancoceleste defence never really suffers too much. Lazio look a little more mobile than in the previous games but the Biancocelesti fail to be dangerous, always making a mistake on the last pass.

As a consequence in the first half there are only two things to note. In the 20th minute, Elseid Hysaj on the left to Mattia Zaccagni. The Lazio forward from the far left wing moves towards the centre and crosses in. Ciro Immobile anticipates the Udinese defence and goes for the header, Marco Silvestri saves into corner. In the 39th minute, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic dribbles past an Udinese player and moves dangerously towards the penalty box. Destiny Udogie tries a kamikaze tackle and hits all possible targets, the ball reaches Immobile who, just inside the box, lays up for a Luis Alberto shot that only just misses the post.

Second half

Lazio, uncharacteristically, immediately step up a gear in the second half and the chances are countless. In the 48th minute Luis Alberto, on the left wing, sends a long cross field pass over to Pedro (who in the interval had substituted Felipe Anderson, booked in the first half). The Spanish champion controls the ball and once in the penalty box, passes to Immobile. King Ciro dribbles a player and in front of Silvestri shoots. The Udinese goalkeeper manages to save. Just after the shot, Immobile is hacked down by Nehuen Perez. A clear penalty, but overlooked by almost everybody, referee, VAR and media.

In the 51st minute, Zaccagni on the left crosses the ball into the box, the Udinese defence clears, in comes Vecino outside the area. Massive shot, like his goal in Naples, but just wide. In the 58th minute Luis Alberto tries to surprise Silvestri directly from a corner, but the Udinese goalkeeper manages to get a hand to the ball and push it out of the goal.

Two minutes later, Zaccagni receives the ball on the left from Hysaj, he sees Luis Alberto moving inside the box and passes to him. The Spaniard controls and passes horizontally to Immobile who tries to get past Adam Masina who trips him. Penalty for Lazio. Ciro Immobile takes the spot kick and puts Lazio in the lead.

Lazio initially insist and try to get a second. Corner for the Biancoclesti in the 64th minute. Luis Alberto crosses the ball into the box and an Alessio Romagnoli header hits the woodwork. In the 72nd minute, a wonderful pass from Luis Alberto to Milinkovic-Savic unmarked in the box but with his back to the goalkeeper. The big Serb tries to clip the ball but misses and Silvestri saves.

And Udinese? Disappeared from the pitch. The only real danger comes in the 85th minute when Walace crosses into the box from the right and IlIja Nestorovski heads the ball into the goal, but he is blatantly in offside and the goal is disallowed.

Massive win for Lazio who now overtake Inter, are four points clear of Milan and only one point behind Juventus who have a game in hand but risk a new docking of points in the near future. If the Bianconeri are penalised by more than 10 points, then Lazio are already mathematically in the Champions League. But better beat Cremonese, already relegated to Serie B, next week just to be sure!!!

Official SS Lazio photo

Who played for Udinese

Silvestri, Perez, Bijol, Masina, Pereyra, Arslan (71` Nestorovski), Walace, Lovric, Udogie (71` Zeegelaar); Samardzic (87` Thauvin), Beto (87` Vivaldo).

Substitutes: Padelli, Piana, Abankwah, Buta, Guessand, Centis, Russo, Bassi.

Manager: Sottil.

Who played for Lazio

Provedel, Lazzari (75' Marusic), Casale, Romagnoli, Hysaj; Milinkovic, Vecino, Luis Alberto, Felipe Anderson (46` Pedro), Immobile, Zaccagni (87` Basic).

Substitutes: Maximiano, Adamonis, Patric, Gila, Radu, Bertini, Cancellieri, Gonzalez.

Manager: Sarri

Referee: Pairetto

Goal: 62’ Immobile (pen)

Booked: Felipe Anderson, Udogie, Pereyra, Bijol


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