SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 14 - 26 Nov 2017 (17.00 UK)
Lazio 1 - 1 Fiorentina
De Vrij 25 (L), Babacar pen 93 (F)
Stadio Olimpico

Stefan de Vrij thought he’d done enough for Lazio, but Khouma Babacar’s penalty awarded via VAR deep into stoppages gave Fiorentina a point.

The Aquile saw their run of nine wins in all competition ended by rivals Roma, then drew 1-1 with Vitesse while resting many stars. Luis Nani and Felipe Anderson were injured, but it was a special game for ex-Lazio Coach Stefano Pioli.

Federico Chiesa hit a daisy-cutter just wide of the near post, but Marco Sportiello’s poor goal kick saw Ciro Immobile hacked down on the edge of the box by Davide Astori for a yellow card.

Jordan Veretout wasted a promising counter with a weak finish, but Marco Sportiello fingertipped a Luis Alberto curler round the post after it bounced right in front of him. Sergej Milinkovic-Savic tried to turn in the box, but Astori ran a big risk and it paid off with his clean tackle.

Lazio broke through when Luis Alberto’s long free kick found Stefan de Vrij for a powerful header from 10 yards. It was the centre-back’s third goal of the season and the Spaniard’s fourth assist from set plays.

Fiorentina made some dangerous counters in waves with four players at a time. Marco Benassi found Federico Chiesa to pull back only for Giovanni Simeone to blast into Row Z.

Luis Alberto’s low drive whistled just wide and Marco Parolo had penalty appeals waved away when he was unbalanced by pressure from Veretout. There was a similar incident in stoppages by Adam Marusic on Simeone, but both were treated the same way by the referee.

Benassi’s snapshot was deflected wide and Chiesa’s low effort smothered by Thomas Strakosha after a smart Thereau run, as the Viola – today playing in green – started the second half brightly.

However, Immobile’s long-range curler was fingertipped round the far post by Sportiello. Fiorentina’s finishing left something to be desired, as Khouma Babacar’s effort was straight at Strakosha.

Babacar had some moments of nausea, but Fiorentina had completed all their substitutions, so he had to play on.

Lazio almost added a second goal after 86 minutes, as Jordan Lukaku kept the ball in at the by-line and chipped the cross back for Parolo’s header, forcing a sensational reaction save from Sportiello. Luis Alberto also saw the follow-up deflected off target.

In stoppages, Fiorentina had their best chance of the game, as Felipe Caicedo made a clumsy clearance on German Pezzella, the move continued and a spectacular Pezzella overhead kick forced an even better Strakosha save.

However, the referee viewed the incident on VAR and awarded the penalty for Caicedo kicking Pezzella, who had got to the ball first. Babacar kept his cool and converted the penalty to equalise at the 93rd minute at the Olimpico.

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Lazio: Strakosha; Bastos, De Vrij, Radu; Marusic (Basta 77), Parolo, Leiva, Milinkovic-Savic, Lulic (Lukaku 61); Luis Alberto (Caicedo 88); Immobile
Fiorentina: Sportiello; Laurini (Vitor Hugo 65), Pezzella, Astori, Biraghi; Benassi (Saponara 77), Badelj, Veretout; Chiesa, Simeone, Thereau (Babacar 60)
Ref: Massa