Lazio met with a mockery of fate when their summer signing Luís Maximiano received a red card for handling outside the box after just six minutes. It was undoubtedly a nightmarish end to his Serie A debut for Lazio as former Spezia goalkeeper Ivan Provedel came on as his replacement. With Sarri’s team going down to 10 men early in the match, Bologna got a chance to put pressure on the hosts.
In an attempt to clear the ball, Mattia Zaccagni conceded a penalty. Marko Arnautovic not only dispatched it home but also received a yellow card for a tussle with the Lazio players in the aftermath of the goal. Two hasty challenges from Adama Soumaoro in the span of eight minutes saw the defender being sent off right on the brink of the half-time whistle.
Lazio entered the field for the second half with rejuvenated confidence as they were searching for their opening goal of the season. Zaccagni’s right-footed curler came close to notching up an opener for the home side at the 61st minute of the match. Sarri’s side continued to mount pressure, which finally resulted in an own goal for the visitors, with Lorenzo De Silvestri putting the ball into his own nets.
A through ball by Sergej Milinkovic-Savic found a shrewd Ciro Immobile, who scored his first goal of the season and gave Lazio a deserving lead for the first time in the match. Despite Bologna pushing for an equaliser, Lazio’s defence and midfield managed to hold onto the lead, with the Biancocelesti registering their first win of this new campaign. Here are player ratings from Lazio’s 2-1 win against Bologna.
Lazio (4-3-3): Maximiano (2); Lazzari (6.5), Patric (7), Romagnoli (7), Marusic (6.5); Milinkovic-Savic (7), Cataldi (6.5), Basic (N/A); Felipe Anderson (5.5), Immobile (8), Zaccagni (5.5)
Substitutes: Provedel (6.5), Alberto (6.5), Cancellieri (N/A), Vecino (N/A), Hysaj (N/A)
Bologna (3-4-1-2): Skorupski (7); Soumaoro (4), Medel (6.5), Lykogiannis (7); De Silvestri (4.5), Schouten (6.5), Nico Domínguez (6), Cambiaso (6); Sansone (6.5); Arnautovic (6.5), Soriano (6)
Substitues: Bonifazi (6), Aebischer (6), Kasius (6.5), Barrow (6), Vignato (N/A)
GIFN | Jyotirmoy Halder