A Wallace header, Felipe Caicedo counter-attack and Adam Marusic stunner gave Lazio a massive 3-1 win away to Olympique Marseille, putting them five points clear in second place.
This was a crucial showdown between the sides battling for second place behind Eintracht Frankfurt, as the Aquile now have six points and leave Marseille on just one. Ex-Roma men Kevin Strootman and Rudi Garcia were joined by former Milan players Adil Rami and Lucas Ocampos, but Florian Thauvin, Aymen Abdennour and Rolando were side-lined. Suspended Joaquin Correa and Dusan Basta were left behind, along with Milan Badelj, Luis Alberto, Riza Durmisi and Alessandro Murgia.
Coach Simone Inzaghi had an historic evening against Marseille on March 14, 2000, as he became the first and so far only Italian player to score four goals in a single Champions League match. He picked up a poker in the 5-1 triumph at the Stadio Olimpico under Coach Sven-Goran Eriksson – and saw a penalty saved too.
Lazio broke the deadlock with their first corner of the game, as Steve Mandanda came out sluggishly and Wallace soared to nod in at the near post against last season's beaten Europa League Finalists.
Ciro Immobile found Martin Caceres at the back post with an inspired pass, but the Uruguayan came sliding in a second too late to make contact.
Felipe Caicedo had timid penalty appeals for a Kamara tackle after his heavy first touch, but moments later Immobile’s angled drive bounced off the base of the far post from 12 yards.
Francesco Acerbi charged down a dangerous Ocampos volley and Morgan Sanson curled a scorcher inches past the far post.
Mandanda flew to palm a viciously dipping Immobile strike over the bar, but Senad Lulic was booked for a very high tackle to stop Sanson going clear on the counter.
Rami made a decisive tackle on Immobile and Marco Parolo’s snapshot was blocked off. Lazio lost Lucas Leiva to a muscular problem within 60 seconds of the restart.
Lulic wasted a golden opportunity with a heavy touch after Caicedo’s inspired slide-rule pass, allowing Mandanda to pluck it off his foot. Sanson did far worse, ballooning into the stratosphere from 12 yards after Sakai had rolled across.
Luiz Gustavo flashed a ball across the face of goal rather than pull back, but just as Marseille were pushing hard, Lazio doubled their lead on the counter.
Immobile provided the assist with a splendid slide-rule pass to cut the defence apart and Caicedo kept his cool to stroke the finish into the far bottom corner off the inside of the boot.
Thomas Strakosha’s first real save came on 70 minutes, his gloves stung by a Luiz Gustavo long-range strike that bounced in front of him.
Olympique Marseille pulled one back in the final stages, as Strakosha seemed to be surprised by Dimitri Payet’s free kick into the near top corner from a long way out.
It set up a tense finale with the hosts throwing everything forward, but substitute Adam Marusic took on Boubacar Kamara and curled a screamer into the far top corner from just inside the area with his weaker foot.
Marseille 1-3 Lazio
Wallace 10 (L), Caicedo 60 (L), Payet 86 (M), Marusic 90 (L)
Olympique Marseille: Mandanda; Sakai, Rami, Kamara, Amavi (Sarr 80); Luiz Gustavo, Strootman; Sanson (Njie 66), Payet, Ocampos; Mitroglou (Germain 66)
Lazio: Strakosha; Wallace, Acerbi, Radu; Caceres, Milinkovic-Savic, Leiva (Marusic 47), Parolo, Lulic (Berisha 62); Caicedo (Cataldi 74), Immobile
Ref: Manzano (ESP)