Lazio displayed an impressive performance as they won 2-1 against Torino. The Biancocelesti were once again trailing on the scoresheet, yet overcame an early goal. The win keeps Lazio within striking distance for first place and trail Juventus by four points. Andrea Belotti opened the scoring in the early moments of the match when Torino was awarded a penalty shot. The striker converted his opportunity and gave the Granata an early lead. Ciro Immobile continues to lead the way up front as he scored his 29th goal for Lazio from a brilliant pass from Luis Alberto. The striker made a smart instinctive run towards the box, received the pass in a timely manner and found the back of the net with a left-footed shot. Late in the match, Marco Parolo sealed the victory with a commanding shot from outside the box that ricocheted off Bremer and fooled Salvatore Sirigu to find the back of the net. Below are the three key takeaways from the match.
Lazio are without Ciro Immobile and Felipe Caicedo against AC Milan
In the past three matches, injuries have been a major concern for Lazio. Simone Inzaghi has overplayed players such as Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, Luis Alberto, Jony, Ciro Immobile and other players due to injuries. This has limited the Italian manager from reducing his vital players’ playing time and further risk from injury or becoming fatigued.
The Biancocelesti’s restart to the season hasn’t been an easy task for the Italian manager as he’s had to manage without key players. Lucas Leiva, Senad Lulic, Adam Marusic are currently sidelined with injuries and Danilo Cataldi was recently added to that list. With several players not expected to return to the lineup for the foreseeable future, it has limited Inzaghi’s options.
Inzaghi’s job just got more difficult as Immobile and Felipe Caicedo each picked up a yellow card, which will force them to sit out of their next match against AC Milan. Lazio’s problems in fielding a squad worsened and now there’s a possibility that they will need to change their formation. Expect a new look to the line up as André Anderson or Luis Alberto could be playing up front with Correa. One thing is certain, Inzaghi will be taking a much different approach to this match.
Luis Alberto Steps Up For Lazio
Lazio were in familiar territory as they found themselves behind in a match once again. They conceded the first goal and trailed for over 45 minutes. Throughout the first half, Immobile struggled to finish his opportunities in the final third and Milinkovic-Savic botched his chance in the goal area as his header sailed far right. The didn’t stop Lazio as they continued to pressure Torino’s backend.
It looked as if the Biancocelesti were headed for their second loss in the past three matches. Luis Alberto once again was the catalyst and stepped up for his side. In the opening minutes of the second half, from near midfield, the trequartista delivered a through ball to Immobile where he saw the striker making his run towards the box. Immobile received the pass with a nice touch and released a shot with his left foot which found the back of the goal.
Before Immobile received the pass, Alberto had a certain demeanour and looked poised, confident and calm when he struck the ball. It was the confidence that surrounded the midfielder that allowed him to take charge of the game and help his side start their comeback. He continues to be a difference-maker in their matches.
Alberto finished with four key passes, converted three accurate long balls and made two interceptions. He made his presence known on both sides of the field as he kept hustling for loose balls, found his players in open spaces and made decisive challenges to prevent Torino from scoring. Alberto’s recent performances have been vital for Lazio as he will be depended upon in hopes of winning the Scudetto.
Jordan Lukaku Makes His Comeback
It has been a while since Jordan Lukaku has appeared in the line up for Lazio on a frequent basis. Since the restart of Serie A, Lukaku has appeared in three straight matches for the Biancocelesti and has made great strides towards his recovery. He has shown good form as his pace, speed and movement have looked tremendous.
However, in the past two seasons, the left wing-back has been hampered by injuries and has appeared in just 12 matches. Lukaku arrived at Lazio with plenty of upsides, regarded as a quick, hard-working and strong left-footed full-back. He is attack-minded and has good pace, technique and crossing ability. When Lazio was tied 1-1, the wing-back displayed similar traits as he sent the ball into the penalty area which started the build-up towards Parolo’s winning goal.
Replacing Jony in the second half, Lukaku provided a different dimension on the left side. Lazio’s needed a player who is able to defend in their own end and has the ability to join on the counter-attack. With Senad Lulic nowhere near returning and Jony being used frequently, the Belgian has made his return at the most crucial time as they fight for their first Scudetto in 20 years. If he does return to full fitness, he could be the solution in the left wing-back position for the remainder of the season.