Simone Inzaghi believes Lazio “should’ve beaten Inter even before extra time, but Samir Handanovic saved everything.”
It was a dramatic night at San Siro, as the Aquile eventually booked their place in the Coppa Italia semi-final against Milan through a penalty shoot-out.
Before that, Handanovic performed heroics, Antonio Candreva and Lautaro Martinez missed open goals, while Ciro Immobile’s strike was cancelled out at the 125th minute by a Mauro Icardi spot-kick.
“I had asked my team to show character and they did that,” said the Coach in his Press conference.
“Without this Handanovic performance, we would’ve won earlier, as he was sensational. The penalty after the 120 minutes were up only extended the match even more, but our qualification was absolutely deserved.
“We had a very hard-fought match with Juventus on Sunday, but despite that, the lads put in a wonderful performance. I congratulated each of them, one by one. We should’ve won even before the 90th minute, but Handanovic saved everything.”
Inzaghi was sent off for dissent just before the start of extra time and was therefore in the stands when the referee changed a red card for Kwadwo Asamoah to a yellow when viewing it on VAR, then awarded the penalty for a Sergej Milinkovic-Savic challenge right on the line.
“I don’t want to talk about these things. I will say that I had never seen a red card revoked, or a penalty awarded after 122 minutes. It was quite right that I was sent off, because we were three minutes from time and I basically tried to score Felipe Caicedo’s chance for him! I ran out of my technical area, so that’s fair.”
Lazio will face Milan in the Coppa Italia semi-final, a repeat of last season’s showdown, but it is also the Aquile’s third consecutive semi.
“I also had three consecutive semi-finals in the Primavera youth version of the Coppa Italia. It’ll be important against Milan, but right now we have to focus on Serie A.”