Welcome to TheLaziali and our live-blog ahead of tonight’s Coppa Italia final between Atalanta and Lazio; to be held at the Stadio Olimpico. The match promises to be one of the most exciting in recent years and the first without Italian powerhouse Juventus for the past five years. For Simone Inzaghi’s Lazio, this match could mean the difference between qualification and lack thereof for next season’s UEFA Europa League; a place in the tournament guaranteed for the winner of this match.
Join our live-blog as we keep an eye on everything going on in the build-up to the game, as well as providing the best content from social media. Keep a finger on the refresh button and join us throughout the day for all you need to know about the big match…
13:30 – Inzaghi’s squad revealed
Acerbi, Badelj, Bastos, Caicedo, Cataldi, Correa, Durmisi, Guerrieri, Immobile, Jordao, Leiva, Luis Alberto, Luiz Felipe, Lulic, Marusic, Milinkovic, Neto, Parolo, Patric, Proto, Radu, Romulo, Strakosha, Wallace.
12:30 – Stefano Orsini: ‘Atalanta are favourites but Lazio have more experience in the final’
RAI journalist Stefano Orsini has given his two cents on the match, claiming that although Atalanta are favourites; Lazio have more final experience and should not be underestimated. “Atalanta is the favourite for me, there is no need to turn around. It is the team that plays better in Italy, has put the league first in times of difficulty, including against Lazio which ten days ago saw with its own eyes what kind of football the Nerazzurri can express. Especially in the second half of the match, where the Biancocelesti have to improve, and that’s where Inzaghi said he worked. But we will have to go from words to deeds, because the game could last more than 90 minutes and therefore it is necessary to be ready and not make the same mistakes made in the past. They must be prepared in the smallest details, Lazio and Inzaghi have great experience in the finals and it is about what you have to bet on. Atalanta is a real team, with strong, fast-moving players. To counter it, Lazio must field all its determination together with the maturity accumulated in the close games. Against Milan and Inter in the Italian Cup, the Biancocelesti have played the best games of their season.”
12:00 – Inzaghi weighs up two formations for the Coppa Italia Final
Simone Inzaghi is reportedly deciding between two potential formations for the final. A 3-5-2 and a 3-4-1-2; the latter involving Luis Alberto playing a slightly more advanced position and behind the two strikers, rather than roaming from the midfield.
10:30 – Important statistics ahead of the Coppa Italia Final
- This match will be the first ever cup final contested between Atalanta and Lazio
- In Coppa Italia: Lazio have won 3, drawn 4 and lost 2 to Atalanta
- Last Coppa Italia meeting finished 2-0 to Lazio in 2008/09
- Lazio have conceded just two goals in their last seven Coppa Italia games
- Lazio are contesting their 20th ever final, winning 12 and losing seven in all competitions.
- Marco Parolo has scored five goals against Atalanta
09:30 – Remo Freuler: ‘Gasperini decisive; Caicedo can put us in trouble’
Atalanta’s Remo Freuler has given comments to the press, in which he revealed more about his feelings ahead of the game. “The role of Gasperini is decisive for our performance. During the week he makes us work hard and this allows us to be physically there for all ninety minutes. With Lazio it will be an intense match as it was two weeks ago. The league match gave us ideas to better face this final. Tonight it will be a balanced challenge and it will be important not to concede a goal. Lazio have many qualities, especially in attack, and it would be wrong to focus on just one player. If I have to learn from the last match, Caicedo put us in trouble. He knows how to hold the ball, he has a lot of physicality and it will not be easy to defend against him. Even Immobile and Correa, however, are dangerous and must be watched.”
09:00 – Papu Gomez: ‘Winning would be extraordinary for Atalanta’s history’
Speaking to the press ahead of the Coppa Italia Final, Atalanta forward Papu Gomez said the following: “For Atalanta, tomorrow’s final represents so much because in over 110 years of history it has played in few finals so far. Winning tomorrow would be extraordinary for the club’s history. I had the chance to win in South America but never in Europe: doing it with Atalanta would be wonderful. A lot has changed since my arrival: since Gasperini came to our bench, he has changed everyone’s mentality, from players to the club. Before we thought only of salvation, now instead we start the season to achieve much more prestigious goals. We do not feel pressure. We offensive players are the finalists of the team and also the most experienced elements of the roster. On the contrary, we have a lot of fun even during the week, in training.”
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