Edy Reja’s Lazio must beat Inter and hope Udinese lose to capture a Champions League place, but admits his future is up in the air.
The Biancocelesti were the hot favourites for third place up until a few weeks ago, but have tumbled down the standings and now can only qualify if other results go their way, although Sunday’s opponents could also in theory get there.
“We have an opportunity and must not let it get away,” said the Coach in his press conference.
“Inter are a strong side and it won’t be easy, but we are aware of our strength and with Miroslav Klose back – even if at 80 per cent fitness – our confidence is growing too. Now we hope the result can prove us right.
“We know the quality of Inter and now they’ve rediscovered Diego Milito’s form, they are getting nothing wrong. Javier Zanetti never stops running and they have a lot of talent in defence too. Our job is to be aggressive and keep the tempo raised so they don’t have time to think.”
There are reports Gianfranco Zola or Roberto Di Matteo could replace him on the bench next season and Reja is keeping all options open.
“I don’t think you can evaluate the work of a Coach from just one game. You see work through the course of a season, then the club evaluates what its Coach did. We have known each other a long time and that evaluation will be done overall.
“I spoke to President Claudio Lotito yesterday and discussed some players. We are talking about the future and apart from the problems of a few months ago we have a fine rapport.
“Aside from everything, I think Lazio will try to do well and improve the worth of the squad. I don’t know where I will be next season. I think it’s natural to plan, but it also depends on where we are.
“Hernanes is a great player and very valuable for the club. We scouted Breno and Ederson, spoke to their agents, but there is nothing certain. So many negotiations are started and then very few are completed.
“I have given a great deal to this club. I am always at the Formello ground to study the tapes. I gave my all every time and would be happy to stay, giving a sense of consistency to this project that has not yet concluded. Since I arrived there have been so many things to do.
“This year if we hadn’t had so many injury problems, then by now we’d already be in the Champions League. Klose’s absence in particular was decisive. Last season with 66 points we finished fifth.”
Lazio currently have 59 points and are in fourth place.