One goal by Mauro Zarate and an assist for Floccari has put Lazio back to the top of Italian football against a toothless Napoli.Lazio climbed back to the top of the pile in Serie A, thanks to a spirited performance against Napoli. The capital club kept Napoli at bay restricting them to mainly shots from outside the area while creating two well worked goals down the other end.
Under-fire forward Mauro Zarate opened the scoring with an acute finish after his captain Stefano Mauri had found the Argentine with a telling pass.
The goal was a confidence boost for Edy Reja's men whose thirst for more eventually got them their second goal of the afternoon in the 62nd minute. Fantastic play by Hernanes and Zarate created the space for Sergio Floccari to pick his corner.
The woodwork was hit twice during the game, both by Argentines. Ezequiel Lavezzi for Napoli in the first-half with a stinging shot and a deflected Zarate shot in the second.
Napoli just couldn't usher themselves to goalscoring positions often enough and when they did they were wasted, paying the price in Rome to go top of the table.
Lazio looked to set the tempo for the in the first five minutes, Napoli giving the hosts room to ship the ball wide and try to find their lone striker Sergio Floccari but found him surrounded by dark blue shirts everytime.
The visitors Argentine striker Ezequiel Lavezzi was the first to properly test the keeper, escaping his markers at the edge of the area but Fernando Muslera covered the shot on goal well.
Lazio took the lead in the 15th minute, taking full advantage of their first clear chance. Captain Stefano Mauri spotted the run of Mauro Zarate sprinting inbehind the Napoli back line with a perfect pass. Zarate's first touch took him away from Paolo Cannarvo and the forward expertly steered his shot past Morgan de Sanctis.
Lazio were buoyed by the opening goal but it was Napoli who came closest to finding the net just before the half hour mark. Lavezzi spinning his shadower and pinging a shot which bent round and flew back off the crossbar.
It was the Argentine again shortly after, breaking free from two defenders but this time he floated a cross towards Christian Maggio but it was just out of reach for the wideman.
Napoli suffered a blow mid-way through the first-half having to replace Cristian Brocchi who looked to have suffered a back strain and was replaced by Matuzalem.
Lazio continued to pressure Napoli, a well worked move switching play from the left to the right finding Cristian Ledesma but the midfielder was caught in two minds whether to cross or shoot and his effort was feeble.
Napoli were lacking their usual golden touch infront of goal on their travels, Edinson Cavani struggling to find his touch as the game progressed.
The capital side crafted a wonderful goal just after an hour played. Ingenious link up play between Hernanes and Zarate found Floccari in the middle, who cooly slotted his shot into the bottom corner with Morgan De Sanctis rooted to the spot.
Zarate almost capped a cracking afternoon for the Argentine and his side, bringing a finger-tip save out of De Sanctis and shortly after seeing his shot deflect off the crossbar.
Fernando Muslera, the keeper having had little to do all game long, fumbled a straight forward cross into the path of fellow Uruguayan Cavani. The joint leage topscorer however, could only pass his shot well over under pressure.
The victory put Lazio two points clear of Milan at the top of the table, while Napoli remain two points behind the Rossoneri in third.
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