Lazio’s Champions League hopes have been hit after a stunning Giuseppe Mascara free-kick sealed a 2-1 win for Novara.
The January signing from Napoli came off the bench to bring a dead-ball situation alive with 12 minutes left of the game.
Relegation threatened Novara took the lead on 35 minutes when Mobido Diakite’s attempt to clear a cross only resulted in an own goal.
Yet Lazio responded immediately as their own January acquisition, Antonio Candreva, made it 1-1 within 120 seconds.
The attacking midfielder headed in from close range following a save by goalkeeper Alberto Fontana.
Lazio could now be caught by Udinese in third should the latter defeat Inter this afternoon. Novara move on to 28 points, but they are still seven points adrift of safety with four games left.