The quarter-finals of the Coppa Italia concluded this evening with Inter vs Lazio at San Siro. The game was a hard-fought tie with both sides having their fair share of chances, Lazio dominating the 90 minutes with plenty of good opportunities to score; especially in the first half. By the time the referee blew his whistle for full-time, the score stood at 0-0; neither team able to convert a chance in regulation time. Lazio took the lead in the second half of extra-time, with Ciro Immobile scoring after a fantastic play with Felipe Caicedo. The game was tied up, 3 minutes into 2 minutes of injury-time in the second half of extra-time; when a foul gave Inter a penalty, which Icardi converted. The game went to penalties, with Lazio winning the tie and progressing to the semi-final thanks to heroics from Thomas Strakosha, saving a penalty from ex-Roma man Radja Nainggolan.
Lazio were on top throughout the first half; much like they were at the Stadio Olimpico on Sunday night against Juventus. However, like in the match against the Bianconeri, Lazio failed to convert any of the chances they were presented with; both Ciro Immobile and Luis Alberto struggling with their finishing and costing Lazio the possibility of heading into half-time with the lead. Inter failed to come up with anything to test Lazio in the first half and it felt like a carbon copy of the match against Juventus; in which the Biancocelesti ended up rueing their missed chances.
The second half was a much more open contest, with both Lazio and Inter having their chances to win the tie. As the clash drew on, Inter Milan grew more confident and the opportunities for Simone Inzaghi’s side. Inter Milan went close on two particular opportunities, with Antonio Candreva and Lautaro Martinez both missing golden chances from close range to give the Nerazzurri the lead, Lautaro’s coming in the final minutes of regulation time. Lazio’s substitutions in the clash saw Bastos come on for Wallace, Durmisi come on for Lulic and Caicedo coming on for Joaquin Correa.
Extra-time started slowly, with Inter on top for a majority of the first 15 minutes of the half. Inter nearly won a penalty when Mauro Icardi fell to the floor after the slightest hint of a nudge from Sergej Milinkovic-Savic. Upon consulting the VAR, the referee decided that a penalty was not to be awarded and the game continued. Lazio used their extra substitution in extra-time to bring on Marco Parolo for Luis Alberto, the Spaniard seeming flat and without any fuel left in the tank. Lazio opened the scoring in the 108th minute, Ciro Immobile scoring after good play with Felipe Caicedo.
Inter vs Lazio was destined to go to penalties when Sergej Milinkovic-Savic gave away a penalty, which was converted by Mauro Icardi; deep into injury-time of extra-time. Stefan Radu was sent off amidst the chaos. Despite Thomas Strakosha saving Lautaro Martinez’s penalty, a saved penalty from Riza Durmisi kept Inter in the shoot-out. Radja Nainggolan then had his penalty saved, before Lucas Leiva converted the winning penalty – sending Lazio through to the semi-final against AC Milan.
Inter vs Lazio – Lazio Player Ratings
Thomas Strakosha – 8 – Lazio’s Albanian keeper played well, keeping Lazio in the game with some key saves to deny Inter. Nearly saved Inter Milan’s penalty but was unfortunately beaten by Icardi. Did fantastically well in the shoot-out to saved Nainggolan and Martinez’s penalties.
Stefan Radu – 7.0 – Despite having a temper, the Romanian performed as expected and delivered a competent defensive performance. Radu. Radu was sent off in extra-time after the penalty was awarded to Inter.
Francesco Acerbi – 7.5 – Strong as always from the Italian, who led the back-line with ease.
Wallace – 6.5 – Booked for a dreadful foul on Miranda, who was outpacing him with the ball. Fairly solid performance aside from that.
Senad Lulic – 7 – Consistency as usual from Lulic, who proved to be a constant threat in his attempts to beat the man on the left. Was replaced by Riza Durmisi in the second half.
Luis Alberto – 6 – Flat performance from one of last year’s heroes, who seems to be hit or miss so far this season. Failed to convert a good chance in the first half and ran out of steam in the second.
Lucas Leiva – 8 – Strong defensive performance from the Brazilian, who was Lazio’s midfield guardian as he has been so often since joining from Liverpool.
Sergej Milinkovic-Savic – 6 – Worked hard and played well but failed to deliver any truly magical moments. Foolish to give away the penalty right at the end of the game.
Joaquin Correa – 7.5 – Correa was one of Lazio’s brightest offerings in the first half, causing the Nerazzurri defense all sorts of problems. Was replaced by Felipe Caicedo in the second half.
Ciro Immobile – 8 – Lazio’s goal-scorer Immobile found the net in extra-time after a somewhat shaky performance prior. Was a constant threat up top though and fashioned many chances.
Subs: Bastos – 7, Durmisi – 7, Felipe Caicedo – 7.5, Marco Parolo – 7
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