Biancocelesti took the lead in the 45th minute, the Belgian equalized at the start of the second half. Then Hellas nearly scored the winning goal. Sarri fails to overtake Roma who were worth the solitary third place
February 6 – Verona
Forward in small steps. The postponement between Verona and Lazio ends in a draw. A useful point for the hosts to continue the difficult march towards salvation and for Lazio to isolate themselves in fourth place and continue to believe in the Champions League. But if for Zaffaroni’s team it’s a draw that boosts morale (both for how it was obtained and for the value of the opponent) the same cannot be said for Lazio who instead offer a performance far below expectations for commitment and pace of play. Fair draw, indeed by calculating the chances it is Verona who have to complain, even if the last (sensational) goal lands on Zaccagni’s feet in full recovery.
pedro unlocks it
Guarded start by both teams. Verona lines up very low to take away space and breath from Lazio’s initiatives. Zaffaroni changes something compared to the last game: Coppola is in defense for Ceccherini, Duda’s debut as owner in midfield, Lasagna is the central striker in attack, Ngonge is behind him with Lazovic. The landlords’ plan is clear: to wait for Lazio to avoid giving them the most congenial football. Plan to be accomplished through tight markings and brisk pace. For twenty minutes Lazio (Sarri leaves the bruised Felipe Anderson on the bench and puts Pedro) must limit themselves to horizontal passes without ever finding outlets forward. In the middle of the fraction, however, the teams begin to lengthen a bit. The landlords decide to try it forward too and in fact they do something. Ngonge makes himself dangerous on two occasions (on the first, after Provedel’s rejection, Doig kicks high from a favorable position). Then later also Depaoli forces Provedel to a difficult intervention. But the hosts’ initiatives have the downside of less defensive coverage which also allows Lazio to become dangerous. Immobile nearly scored in two circumstances (on the first he shoots high, on the second Montipò is good at saving), then it’s Pedro who wastes an excellent goal. But the Spanish champion made up for it a few minutes later (in the 45th minute), inventing a goal that left his teammates and opponents speechless. Supported by Cataldi, with his back to goal just inside the area, the ex Barça controls the ball with his right foot, then suddenly turns around and sends it into the top corner with his left foot.
Having found the advantage on the gong of the first half, Lazio perhaps deludes themselves that they have the game in hand. But he doesn’t count on the pride of the home team who return to the field after the interval with the firm will to put things right immediately. And they do it in a matter of minutes. The 1-1 goal comes thanks to a header by Ngonge from a free-kick from the trocar by Lazovic. And Hellas doesn’t stop, it continues to push against an incredulous and dazed Lazio. It was first Lazovic who came close to making it 2-1, hitting a sensational post with a shot from distance. Then it is Doig who has a very inviting ball, but Provedel overcomes himself and rejects with his foot. Then he also touches Lasagna, but the attacker kicks high. Verona is not lucky, but his drive runs out around the 20th minute, also because Sarri puts Vecino in for Cataldi and makes Lazio’s midfield less vulnerable. Subsequently Sarri also removes Immobile and inserts Felipe Anderson as central striker. Lazio regroups and regains control of the game. But – as in the first twenty minutes – he can’t find outlets forward (the only occasion is a shot by Zaccagni which ends just wide). Verona prevents him from doing so, putting himself back short and compact in his own half. Zaffaroni’s substitutions are spot on because they bring fresh strength to a team that as the minutes go by begins to feel a little tired. Ceccherini enters for Coppola, Gaich for Ngonge and Abildgaard for Lazovic. The 1-1 at that point seems written and it will be, but right at the end Zaccagni has a ball that just needs to be pushed into the net a few steps from the goal. The former gialloblù tries with the heel but Montipò is not surprised. Right so.
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February 6, 2023 (change February 6, 2023 | 20:45)
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