After a 0-0 draw at the Stadio Olimpico against rivals Roma in the Derby della Capitale, Lazio fans were very impressed after bouncing back strongly and securely after a poor Europa League quarter-final exit losing 4-1. On the eve of Fiorentina vs Lazio, the biancoceleste coach Simone Inzaghi spoke at the press conference of the ‘Centro Sportivo di Formello’.
“We knew what the derby meant for our supporters and for our city. It was not easy to face Roma after the elimination from the Europa League; less than 24 hours after the match against Salzburg, we played an excellent match. We have put a lot of energy into the field – so much heart and the group has been helping with their maximum effort. In the second half, until the expulsion of Stefan Radu, the team was showing well on the pitch and the thing that satisfied me the most was the fitness of the team that, until the end, kept a good pace.”
We must not think of the six games that are missing, but only the next: at this moment the most fundamental thing is to offer a good test in Florence. We will play against a side that has suffered only a goal in the last 7 matches. The viola is coming into this match against us with 5 wins and a draw. They have excellent players who have helped the team. Coach of Fiorentina Stefano Pioli? I know him and he is very prepared. We will have to offer a very careful performance.”
“Ciro Immobile took a bad blow on the instep (the part of a person’s foot between the ball and the ankle) and this morning he worked in the water: he will return to the squad, then tomorrow we will evaluate him. We have played a lot, but the energy of the players are recovered, while the mental ones are concentrated on an important goal that will eliminate any waste. Excluding Patric and Radu, my men are all summoned to the game, and after muscular awakening I will choose the best team based on recoveries.”
“Senad Lulic has been training this morning: tomorrow I will have to evaluate him. Jordan Lukaku has trained continuously and has played two important pieces of the race. I will choose which player to use on the left side tomorrow. Luis Alberto and Felipe Anderson two very high quality players: they were lined up together with Milinkovic–Savic in Udine, while in Florence I would have to give up the number 21 to make the Brazilian and the Spanish coexist.
“I strongly wanted Caceres because he can help us a lot: he had a physical problem, but he is a very generous boy who has always trained hard, even though he was not at his best. He’s been back to work at the best for about 15 days and tomorrow he could come back to play from the beginning.”
“Luiz Felipe is a player who surprised me: I did not think he was already that mature. He always wants to improve and has collected what he deserved. Wallace has been instrumental in last season, but right now he had a physical problem that limited him. The Brazilian is working, but I do not see him at his best: I hope he can return to express himself in good form. Bastos has made mistakes, but he always trains to the best of his capabilities, trying to get a return into the line-up – tomorrow he could play, but we’ll see.”
“Luis Alberto entered very well on the pitch in the derby, and he helped us a lot to regain control of the field. Felipe Anderson against Salzburg was decisive. A coach must have important cards on the bench that can change the inertia of the games. When a team has a balance, a coach must be rational and choose the best from time to time to preserve the identity of their group.”
“If Immobile does not play up top, I have Caicedo and Nani who always work hard: the choice would fall on one of the two. I will take this choice with great serenity at the end of tomorrow’s muscle training. Immobile has no problem running, but has a blow on the instep and could have problems kicking: we still have 24 hours at our disposal, tomorrow evening we will see how to line-up. Anyways, I’m calm because I have almost everyone available “.