Simone Inzaghi had a special dedication for “dear friend” and former teammate Sinisa Mihajlovic, as Lazio visit Bologna.
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This is a special fixture, as Mihajlovic spent much of his career at Lazio with Inzaghi as a teammate and fans from both clubs have arranged to go on a pilgrimage to the church in the hills around Bologna before the game, where they will pray for his recovery from leukaemia.
“The first thoughts are for Sinisa, who is a warrior and I am sure he’ll win his battle,” said Inzaghi in a Press conference.
“He is a dear friend and I think of him often. When I first arrived in Rome, he helped me so much to settle into Lazio and the new city. We shared many great victories together. If I don’t get to hug him tomorrow, it’ll be in the return match at the Olimpico.”
Mihajlovic was on the bench for the first two games of the season, but had to go back into hospital for the second round of chemotherapy.
There are reports in La Gazzetta dello Sport that he could return to the Stadio Dall’Ara today, pending permission from his doctors.
Lazio got back on track with wins over Genoa in Serie A and Rennes in the Europa League.
“This needs to be the match that gives us a sense of consistency,” continued Inzaghi. “We are up against an organised Bologna side who will be fired up by a few results that did not reflect their performances.
“Joaquin Correa had a slight muscular problem against Genoa and he wanted to play on Thursday, but we decided to preserve him so he could be 100 per cent for this weekend. Squad rotation is essential, as we cannot think of playing every three days with the same XI.
“I am glad to have the kind of options this season that I didn’t before, for example Adam Marusic and Manuel Lazzari can alternate in what is a very labour-intensive role.”
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