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Italy - Serie A
January 16, 2011
• Stadio Olimpico, Roma
Referee: N. Rizzoli
• Attendance: 32000
L. Kozák 84'
90' + 3'
That's it! Lazio do a good job keeping the ball in Sampdoria's end. The referee blows the final whistle and Lazio earn a crucial three points with a 1-0 win. The hosts jump into joint second place with Napoli on 37 points. Thank you for joining Goal.com's LIVE coverage of Serie A.
Gonzalez is in all kind of space on the counter, but is not fast enough to get away from Ziegler, who denies the substitute a clear run on goal. Three minutes of stoppage time awarded.
Sampdoria are pushing forward in numbers searching for an equaliser. Koman's cross is collected by Curci though and time is running out for the visitors.
Yellow Card Libor Kozák
Macheda uses a cheeky backheel to set up Pazzini in the area, but under pressure from Dias the former Fiorentina man cannot control and the opportunity goes begging.
Yellow Card Pietro Accardi
Assist Cristian Ledesma
Goal Libor Kozák
GOAL GOAL GOAL FOR LAZIO. Ledesma curls in the freekick and Kozak is left completely unmarked to head on goal from close range. Curci couldn't keep it out! 1-0 for the hosts with just a few minutes left.
Accardi fouls Zarate, earning a booking. Lazio have a freekick on the right flank.
Macheda with his first chance. Guberti's long cross is headed back into the centre of the box by Koman. The youngster can't get over it though and heads over the bar.
INCREDIBLE INGENUITY FROM MAURI! The veteran uses his heel to flick on a long ball into the six yard are, but Ziegler makes a last-ditch tackle ahead of the substitute Kozak. So close for the Biancocelesti.
Hernanes breaks for Lazio and has his shot blocked yet again! He must certainly be frustrated this evening.
15 minutes left in Rome. Can anyone get the winner? You're guess is as good as mine.
Zarate spreads it to Lichtsteiner as Lazio continue to look for a way through the well-marshalled Samp backline. They can't do it though, eventually making a wayward pass and the ball goes out for a throw in.
Koman skins Scaloni down the flank and puts in a low cross, but Diakite scrambles back to make a decisive clearance.
The whistle ends a Lazio attack as the referee judges that Curci was fouled. Meanwhile, the previously mentioned Macheda gets his chance, replacing the ineffectual Pozzi.
Koman hears it from his team-mates after losing the ball when they had numbers. Pozzi was wide open and waiting for a pass.
Sampdoria make a chance as the highly-touted Andrea Poli enters the match for Tissone. It's a straight swap in the midfield.
Floccari fails to control a through ball into the area from Scaloni, wasting a good chance for the hosts.
ZARATE DRAGS HIS SHOT JUST WIDE! The Argentine wizard cuts in from the right and hits a left-foot effort from the edge of the box that finishes inches wide of the post.
Lichtsteiner asks for a penalty as he feels his cross was handled by Guberti. The referee waves play on and it would seem to be the right call.
Yellow Card Stephan Lichtsteiner
Swiss international Lichtsteiner picks up a yellow card. That booking means he's suspended for their next match.
Tissone tries his luck from 20 yards...and then common theme of blocked shots continues in this game. Yawn. Let's turn up the pressure lads!
Accardi heads towards goal from a corner, but it doesn't make it all the way there through the crowd of bodies. At the other end Curci pounces on a through ball by Diakite before Floccari can reach it.
Palombo has been very solid in the centre of midfield today. He's limited Hernanes all match long and once again steps up to intercept a pass from the Brazilian and win possession back for his team.
PAZZINI MISSES A GLORIOUS CHANCE! Palombo chips into the area and the Italian international lost his marker but somehow volleyed over from close range! That was the best opportunity of the match so far.
Floccari concedes possession after being forced far away from the opponent's area. Eventually Pazzini, who has been entirely isolated just like Floccari, has his hot blocked at the other end.
The second-half kicks off at the Stadio Olimpico. Can one of these teams find a breakthrough?
45' + 2'
That's the end of the first-half and it remains 0-0. Join us for the second-half in a few minutes.
Yellow Card Giampaolo Pazzini
Pazzini earns a yellow card, retaliating in frustration after losing the ball in the area. He hacked down Diakite!
Lichtsteiner's makes a marauding run forward from right back behind the defence and collects a high pass, his square ball is denied by Curci though - who has been solid throughout.
Tissone is teed up in a central position outside the box, but his volley is no trouble for Muslera, who has been relatively untroubled since the opening minutes.
Yellow Card Daniele Dessena
Dessena is booked for a crunching tackle! A fully deserved yellow card, he was nowhere close to getting the ball from Scaloni.
Hernanes hits a scorching freekick from just outside the area and Curci requires two attempts to save. This match seems to be opening up towards the end on the half.
After a throw-in, Guberti quickly fires a cross from the left wing into the box. It's once again easily knocked away by the Lazio defence.
Clear cut chances have been few and far between with both defences on high alert. That's no surprise as the two sides have two of the best defensive records in the league. Lazio only allowing 18 goals and Samp conceding just 17.
Ziegler's counter is snuffed about by Diakite. There were alarm bells ringing for Lazio as Samp had numbers coming forward.
Winger Stefano Guberti has been one of the in-form players for the visitors, but he's barely had a sniff this match. His clever pass into the area for Pazzini is too long and out of play.
Offside. A freekick is whipped into the area from the right, but Samp are well-prepared and catch two or three Lazio players offside, Nullifying their chance of scoring.
THAT WAS CLOSE FROM LAZIO! Mauri initiates a counter-attack before Floccari holds the ball up for Zarate. The Argentine beats his man cuts the ball back for Ledesma, whose one-timer flies just wide of the far post.
Lazio earn a corner after some trickery from Zarate on the wing. Mauri lofts it into the box, but it goes straight to Curci.
On-loan from Manchester United striker Federico Macheda, who began his youth career with Lazio, is on the bench for Sampdoria. Will he get a second-half chance against his former club?
Hernanes fires from long range and it takes a bounce before Curci makes an easy save. The effort was too central to trouble the goalkeeper.
Lionel Scaloni is given a very rare start in Serie A, but looks a tad rusty at left-back.
CURCI MAKES A GREAT INTERCEPTION. A whipped in cross from Zarate on he left is punched away by the former Siena man before Brocchi or Floccari could pounce.
Zarate finally gets involved in the action, dribbling towards the box and attempting a daisy-cutter. The crowded defence ensures it doesn't get through to the goalkeeper though.
Brocchi tries a speculative effort from 25 yards. A strange decision as he had open players to his left. It trickles wide, not troubling Curci.
Mauri finds Hernanes flying forward from the centre circle, but the Brazilian's control is unusually poor and possession is conceded back to Samp.
With a victory, Lazio could go joint-second place on 36 points with Napoli. Floccari seems to be well aware of this, as he bursts into the area and has a shot blocked by Accardi.
Lazio are taking a fairly patient approach, having been on the back foot in the opening minutes. They pass around the ball in defence waiting for an opening to go forward.
The match kicks off! Here's hoping for a great one! It's a good start for the visitors as Pazzini's shot from a tight angle forces a corner.
Sampdoria: Curci; Dessena, Volta, Accardi, Ziegler; Guberti, Tissone, Palombo, Koman; Pozzi, Pazzini.
Let's go through the line-ups - Lazio: Muslera; Lichtsteiner, Diakite, Dias, Scaloni; Ledesma, Brocchi; Zarate, Hernanes, Mauri; Floccari.
Hello and welcome to Goal.com's LIVE coverage of the Serie A clash between Lazio and Sampdoria at the Stadio Olimpico. Kickoff is in just five minutes!
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