For the second straight matchday, Lazio took part in the Serie A’s first game. And for the second straight game they came away with a 1-0 victory; this time at home to 17th place Empoli.
An Immobile-less Lazio were short on chances in the first half. Joaquin Correa had the best chance of the half when he was put through on goal but his awkward shot went right at Empoli’s goalkeeper Ivan Provedel. Caicedo also missed a sitter but it was offside anyways. Empoli did very little to challenge Strokasha in the first 45 as well. The breakthrough for Lazio, and the eventual winning goal, came in the form of a 42′ Felipe Caicedo penalty that was drawn by Caicedo himself. It was a cheap penalty to give away from an Empoli point of view as a poor touch from Provedel forced him to tackle the Ecuadorian just inside the box in a position that wasn’t very threatening.
The second half was rather uneventful as well. Lazio were looking for a second goal to put the game out of Empoli’s reach but i biancocelesti looked unconvincing going forward. A good couple of chances came in the form of free kicks that were out of shooting range but were lobbed into dangerous areas and caught Empoli defenders napping. Unfortunately these set piece opportunities were wasted with lacklustre finishing in front of goal. Another great chance went to Correa who was on a semi-break but skied his shot. The struggling Tuscans looked a little more threatening in the second half but didn’t have enough quality to find an equalizer.
At the final whistle, Lazio were victorious by a score of 1-0. Not the greatest performance but they got the job done. New signing Romulo had a decent debut for i biancocelesti on the right-hand side and Caicedo did a good enough job filling in for Ciro Immobile. After their second straight clean sheet, Simone Inzaghi’s side move into the sought-after 4th position for the time being, ahead of Milan, Atalanta, and Roma who are yet to play. Beppe Iachini’s Empoli remain in 17th, only 1 point out of the drop zone.
Lazio vs Empoli: Lazio Player Ratings
Thomas Strakosha – 7
Bastos – 7
Francesco Acerbi – 7.5
Stefan Radu – 7
Rômulo – 7.5
Senad Lulić – 7.5
Lucas Leiva – 7
Sergej Milinković-Savić – 7
Valon Berisha – 7
Joaquin Correa – 7
Felipe Caicedo – 7
Subs: Danilo Cataldi – 6, Milan Badelj – 6.5, Pedro Neto – N/A
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