Lazio held firm to edge out a tough 1-0 win over rivals Roma in a scrappy Derby della Capitale clash.
The Biancocelesti were without key figures Ciro Immobile and Sergej Milinkovic-Savic for the derby, leaving Maurizio Sarri a little concerned. The team’s form began to wobble recently following the injury to the 32-year-old Italian striker and the suspension to the Serbian midfielder only increased the anxiety.
Jose Mourinho’s Roma couldn’t count on new star Paulo Dybala and other important options were injured, like Leonardo Spinazzola and Georginio Wijnaldum. The Giallorossi booked their spot in the Europa League Round of 16 last week and were starting to show signs of consistency.
As expected, it was an incredibly tense and edgy affair at the Stadio Olimpico, being a match filled with fouls, breaks in play and uninspiring movement of the ball.
The tension was broken in the 29th minute. Roma were trying to build up from the back but were caught out by a pressing Pedro, whose interception guided the ball to Felipe Anderson’s feet. The Brazilian winger made no mistake from 13 yards out and easily beat Rui Patricio to make it 1-0.
Lazio stood strong after this and refused to concede anything to Roma in their final third, leaving Mourinho’s attack sterile and blunt. Despite the pressure, Sarri’s side held on and secured all three points in the Derby della Capitale, finally giving them something to smile about after a difficult few weeks.