SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 29 - 18 Mar 2018 (19.45 UK)
Lazio 1 - 1 Bologna
Verdi 3 (B), Leiva 17 (L)
Stadio Olimpico

Lucas Leiva cancelled out an early Bologna goal, but Lazio were unable to completely recover from that Simone Verdi opener.

The Biancocelesti risked fatigue and were somewhat forced into their choices after Thursday’s 2-0 victory at Dynamo Kiev, which booked their place in the Europa League quarter-finals. Sergej Milinkovic-Savic was not fully fit, with Senad Lulic, Stefan Radu and Patric missing, so Simone Inzaghi launched a new all-attack formation with Ciro Immobile, Felipe Anderson, Luis Nani and Luis Alberto. Bologna had Andrea Poli and Riccardo Orsolini injured, but Rodrigo Palacio returned to the starting XI.

The Curva Nord was empty for the first 15 minutes as part of a protest from Lazio ultras against refereeing errors.

Surprisingly, it was Bologna who took the lead after just three minutes. Blerim Dzemaili’s screamer from distance took Thomas Strakosha by surprise, he only managed to parry it into the path of Simone Verdi for a tap-in.

Marco Parolo drilled just wide and Luis Alberto stung Antonio Mirante’s gloves with a dipping strike from outside the box.

It was all Lazio and they earned their equaliser when Lucas Leiva sprung the offside trap on a Luis Alberto through ball and made the most of painfully static defending to score from eight yards.

Verdi drilled wide and Palacio had a shot charged down by Luiz Felipe, who kept both hands clasped firmly behind his back to avoid handball.

Luis Alberto curled a free kick over, then his cross whistled past both Immobile and Nani in the box.

Inzaghi made a double change at half-time, introducing Jordan Lukaku and Bastos. Luis Alberto pounced on an Adam Masina error, but drilled across the face of goal, and Immobile forced a save out of Mirante, as Lazio started the half very aggressively.

Bologna were more focused on defence, but still had a good counter with Ibrahima Mbaye just off the bench pulling back for Godfred Donsah to test Strakosha.

Felipe Anderson tried to put himself about, but the finishing was poor, with two good situations going over the bar, as did Luis Alberto.

Yet Strakosha almost ended the game the way he started it, but this time desperately pushed a Verdi long-range strike out from under the bar.

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Lazio: Strakosha; Luiz Felipe, De Vrij, Wallace (Bastos 46); Marusic, Parolo, Leiva, Luis Alberto, Felipe Anderson (Caicedo 83); Nani (Lukaku 46), Immobile
Bologna: Mirante; De Maio (Mbaye 59), Helander, Gonzalez; Torosidis (Romagnoli 77), Dzemaili, Pulgar, Donsah, Masina (Krejci 85); Verdi, Palacio
Ref: Damato