Serie A Preview: Fiorentina-Lazio
Fiorentina - Lazio | News Archive
Lazio's winger Lucas Castroman (Allsport)
Lazio shoot for the fifth positive result in a row when they visit relegation-bound Fiorentina on Sunday afternoon at the Franchi stadium.
The guests have been looking in a good shape lately, with the exception of the humiliating defeat they suffered four rounds ago in the derby against Roma. Quite unexpectedly, the Biancocelesti still have a slight chance to reach the fourth place, and subsequently a spot in next season's Champions League. However, in order to do that Zaccheroni's men must win all of their four matches, hoping at the same time that Bologna, Chievo and Milan will stumble.
The first step shouldn't be a very difficult one. Last week's 0-3 thrashing in Piacenza was the 18th defeat of Fiorentina's troubled season: the Viola are not mathematically relegated yet, but realistically not even four wins in as many matches would be enough for them to reach the save. Only one win in the last 16 matches is clear evidence that they have given up: the board is already planning next season's attempt to come back to the top league.
-Fiorentina: a few offensive problems for coach Bianchi. In addition to long-term injured Chiesa, the hosts will miss injured offensive midfielder Morfeo and striker Nuno Gomes. Argentinean Equi Gonzalez will surely pair up Adriano, but Bianchi could choose a more offensive solution, fielding Mijatovic from the starting whistle.
Starting line-up (3-4-1-2): Taglialatela; Tarozzi, Adani, Moretti, Agostini; Di Livio Amaral, Amoroso; Mijatovic; Adriano, Gonzalez.
Bench: Manninger, Torricelli, Cois, Baronio, M.Rossi, Palombo, Ganz.
Injured: Nuno Gomes, Chiesa, Pierini, Morfeo
Cautioned (one more yellow card to be suspended): Morfeo, Vanoli, Nuno Gomes, Pierini
-Lazio: the guests will face this key match without two of their brightest stars, injured striker Crespo and suspended skipper Nesta. Furthermore, coach Zaccheroni could have to do without defender Couto, who is suffering from a muscular problem, and keeper Peruzzi, who sprained his left ankle. Simone Inzaghi is expected to be back in the middle of the offensive line.
Probable line-up (4-4-2): Marchegiani; Pancaro, Stam, *****, Favalli; Castroman, Giannichedda, Fiore, Stankovic; S.Inzaghi, Lopez
Bench: Favazza, Colonnese, Poborski, Simeone, Liverani, Mendieta, Evacuo
Injured: Peruzzi, Crespo, Dino Baggio, Couto
Cautioned (one more yellow card to be suspended): Simone Inzaghi
FORM GUIDE & NUMBERS
Fiorentina last 6 matches: WDDLLL. The signs of life Fiorentina showed some weeks ago are just a distant memory now. The Viola are in a free fall and didn't manage to build on a 3-match positive streak, which included an impressive win in Verona and two straight draws against Udinese and Bologna. In the last three matches Bianchi's men suffered as many defeats, without scoring a goal.
Overall: 5 W – 7 D – 18 L - Average points per match 0.73 – Goals scored/conceded 28-55
At home: 3 W – 6 D – 6 L – Average points per match 1.00 – Goals scored/conceded 15-20
Lazio last 6 matches: WLDWDW. The tough defeat in the Capital derby against Roma remains Lazio's lone defeat in the last seven matches. The Biancocelesti collected eight points in the last four contests, defeating Udinese and Lecce on their home ground and grabbing a couple of away draws against Brescia and Lecce. Zacccheroni's men have scored at least once in each of their last eight outings.
Overall: 11 W – 11 D – 8 L - Average points per match 1.47 – Goals scored/conceded 40-29
Away: 3 W – 5 D – 7 L – Average points per match 0.93 – Goals scored/conceded 11-17
PLAYERS TO WATCH
-Fiorentina: Di Livio. Watching the old fighter, you will never understand if his team is winning the scudetto or struggling at the bottom of the ranking: he always gives the 100%.
-Lazio: Lucas Castroman. After a difficult first part of the season, the young Argentinan winger looks finally close to his best shape. His energy and determination could be very important for Lazio in these final matches.
Lazio simply must win this one in order to keep on hoping in the fourth place, while Fiorentina are in free fall. On the cards, this is not the most difficult prediction of the season, but even last week's Venezia-Roma was supposed to be…But differently from the already relegated Lagunari, the Viola seem to have stopped fighting, and a healthy Lazio should take profit of that.
Fiorentina 0 Lazio 2