With the two Roman clubs’ trajectories heading in such different directions, it seems only a matter of time before the ultimate insult is added to the considerable injury Roma have already suffered over the last few months.
At least Milanisti could be partly consoled with the thought that Inter had been held to a 1-1 draw at home by a Cesena side looking more destined for the drop with each passing week.
The Biancocelesti simply cannot stop scoring and their threat spreads throughout the entire squad. Confidence oozes from every pore of the Lazio framework and Stefano Pioli has done an exceptional job of rotating and motivating his players to ensure the level of performance doesn’t slip.
Antonio Candreva was suspended this week, but even in his absence Keita Balde Diao was a potent threat from the bench. Lucas Biglia’s outstanding volley in the 4-0 drubbing of Fiorentina last weekend was perhaps the most powerful example of the confidence Pioli has instilled.
The Aquile have scored 11 goals in their last four matches and it has not only been Anderson tormenting opposition defences. Miroslav Klose has found yet another lease of life, scoring and assisting in equal measure, a博狗62nd fellow veteran Stefano Mauri has been in inspired form.
Roma have their Europa League tie with Fiorentina and the visit of Napoli to worry about, two fixtures which could turn what was such a promising season into a living nightmare for新二娱乐网 Garcia and Co.
The Viola had also looked set to slip up, but dramatically came back from 1-0 down to beat Pippo Inzaghi’s Milan 2-1 in the last minute and pile more misery on the Rossoneri 永利网投Coach.
Sampdoria’s surprise win, in which Lazio youth product Lorenzo De Silvestri opened the scoring, confirmed their Champions League credentials. Sinisa Mihajlovic’s side sit level on points with Fiorentina and only one behind Napoli, after Verona stunned Rafa Benitez’s side with a 2-0 win.
Now they are rudderless, toothless, stuttering. When 2-0 down at home to Sampdoria on Monday evening, Seydou Keita was sent off for sarcastically applauding the referee and refused to leave the field. The scene was a telling summary of the bitter atmosphere surrounding the team.
The story couldn’t be more different with their cross-town rivals, however. Lazio beat Torino 2-0 thanks to a double from the sensational Felipe Anderson and the result marked their fifth consecutive league win.
Even the most optimistic Romanisti will struggle to convince themselves that they will maintain second place for long. The well-oiled, ruthless machine that the Biancocelesti have become play Verona, Cagliari and Empoli in their next three games.
On paper, it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that Lazio now sit just a point behind Roma in the Serie A standings. The Biancocelesti have won more games than Roma (15 v 13), they’ve scored more goals than Roma (49 v 38) and they have a better goal difference than Roma (+22 v +17).
A European exit would certainly be a disappointment and doubly so were it to be followed by defeat to the Partenopei. The ambition has already shifted from competing for the title to scrabbling to qualify for the Champions League.
Yet up until December 6, when the Giallorossi’s incredible series of draws began, Rudi Garcia’s side were considered the most likely pretender to Juventus’ Scudetto crown.