Two goals from Serie A's leading scorer Ciro Immobile, the second in stoppage time, gave third-placed Lazio a dramatic 2-1 win at 10-man Brescia on Sunday as they chalked up their ninth successive league victory. Simone Inzaghi's side overcame the absence of several key players as they cut the gap between themselves and leading pair Juventus and Inter Milan to three points after scoring an injury-time winner for the third away game in a row.
Juventus and Inter, who have 42 points each from 17 games, both play on Monday while Lazio, with 39 points in 17 games, has an outstanding fixture at home to Verona to come in early February. Lazio had to reshuffle their midfield as Lucas Leiva and Luis Alberto – their key assist-provider this season – were both suspended while Danilo Cataldi was not fully fit.
Lazio forward Felipe Caicedo netted from close range after seven minutes but saw his effort ruled out for offside, then Senad Lulic struck the post. However, Brescia, who has enjoyed a new lease of life since Eugenio Corini was recalled as coach in December, one month after being sacked, went ahead with a Mario Balotelli volley in the 18th minute, his first home goal since joining his hometown club this season. Lazio leveled after Andrea Cistana fouled Caicedo and was sent off for a second bookable offense and Immobile converted the penalty in the 42nd minute despite not connecting cleanly. The visitors struggled to break down their 10-man opponents in the second half but yet again won the match at the death as they did in away matches against Sassuolo and Cagliari. A long ball was floated into the Brescia area and Caicedo laid it off to Immobile who scored his 19th goal of the season.
About the author
Research Associate at Center for Islam and Global Affairs (CIGA) at Istanbul Sabahattin Zaim University