Lazio vs CFR Cluj: Match Preview
Lazio hosts CFR Cluj at the Stadio Olimpico in Matchday 5 of the 2019/20 UEFA Europa League.
In Matchday 4 of the competition, Simone Inzaghi’s side lost to Celtic 2-1 due to a 95th-minute winner from Olivier Ntcham, while Dan Petrescu’s team defeated Stade Rennes 1-0 thanks to a late goal from Mario Rondon in the 87th minute.
Looking at both squads in their respective domestic competitions, the Biancocelesti sit in third in the Serie A with a record of 8W-3D-2L, while the Ceferistii sit in first in the Romanian Liga 1 with a record of 10W-4D-3L.
In Group E, Celtic currently sits at the top of the table with 10 points, CFR Cluj sits in second with 9 points, Lazio sits in third with 3 points, and Stade Rennes sits at the bottom of the table with 1 point. The Scottish club has already clinched their spot in the Round of 32, while a draw against Lazio would be all the Romanian side needs to guarantee their progression.
Lazio vs CFR Cluj: Expected Lineups
Lazio (3-5-1-1): Proto; Acerbi, Vavro, Bastos; Jony, Luis Alberto, Cataldi, Parolo, Lazzari; Joaquin Correa; Adekanye.
CFR Cluj (4-3-3): Arlauskis; Camora, Burca, Boli, Cestor; Culio, Dokovic, Bordeianu; Paun, Deac, Omrani, Peteleu.
Lazio vs CFR Cluj: Prediction
Lazio has shown good form in Serie A this season, currently sitting in third place in the standings. They come into this match after a last-minute win over Sassuolo, in which Felipe Caicedo scored in the 92nd minute to gift the Biancocelesti all three points; that was their fifth straight win in the league which sees them remain unbeaten in their last eight matches in the Italian competition. However, in the UEFA Europa League, their form has not been as impressive. They have lost three of their four matches in Group E. Therefore, if they aspire to advance to the Round of 32, they will need to win against CFR Cluj. it is important to note that all three of their losses have come late into their matches; incredibly disappointing for both fans and the club alike.
As for CFR Cluj, they find themselves first in the Romanian Liga 1. They have won four of their last six matches and have continued to show proper form this season. In regard to the UEFA Europa League, the Ceferistii are in second place, just one point behind Celtic. The club will be coming into this match focusing on getting all three points to take them to the top of the table.
This match should be a close encounter, as Lazio will aim to stay alive in the competition, whilst Cluj will want to book their spot into the next round.
Prediction: Lazio 2-0 CFR Cluj