- Associated Press - Sunday, May 10, 2015

MILAN (AP) - Lazio missed the chance to move back into second place in Serie A as it lost 2-1 at home to Inter Milan on Sunday after playing most of the second half with nine men.

Hernanes scored both Inter goals against his former club, netting the winner six minutes from time.

Antonio Candreva had given Lazio the lead but Mauricio was sent off in the 24th minute and goalkeeper Federico Marchetti was also dismissed shortly after the hour. Substitute Etrit Berisha’s first act was to save Mauro Icardi’s penalty.

“I think the first goal should have been disallowed,” Lazio director of sport Igli Tare said. “I also have huge doubts about their second goal and the penalty. I don’t think it was right to put such a young referee in charge of such an important match.”

Lazio remained a point behind Roma. The two capital clubs meet in the penultimate match of the season, before Lazio plays Napoli in its final game.

“There is certainly disappointment, as this was a fundamental weekend and we could have taken advantage of slip-ups from our opponents,” Lazio coach Stefano Pioli said. “The team gave everything, even if they made a few mistakes. The future is still in our hands and we will fight right until the end.”

Earlier, Napoli cut the gap to Lazio to three points with a 2-2 draw at already-relegated Parma.

Fiorentina kept up its pursuit of a European spot by beating Empoli 3-2 to move back above Sampdoria, which crushed Udinese 4-1 earlier. Inter was two points behind sixth-place Samp.

At the other end of the table, 10-man Atalanta clung on to win 3-2 at Palermo to boost its chances of avoiding the drop and ensure Cesena, beaten 3-2 by Sassuolo, was relegated.

Elsewhere, Chievo Verona drew 2-2 against Hellas Verona in a local derby match.

Lazio was looking for a win to move above Roma, which had lost 2-1 at AC Milan on Saturday and seemed to be on course for victory when Candreva fired it in front following another assist from Felipe Anderson, who had raced into the penalty area before cutting back from the byline.

The match turned when Mauricio was sent off for a clumsy challenge on Rodrigo Palacio and Hernanes leveled, curling the free kick around the wall and into the bottom left corner.

Hernanes, who spent three and a half years at Lazio, was booed by his former fans after celebrating with his trademark backflip.

Lazio continued to threaten even with 10 men but had another player sent off when Hernanes sent Icardi through on goal and Marchetti brought down the Argentine.

His replacement Berisha dove to his left to keep out Icardi penalty and Lazio continued to attack but were caught out on the counter by a Palacio flick to send Hernanes bursting down the center of the pitch and clear through on goal to score the winner.

Second spot offers direct entry into the Champions League, while third carries a berth in the last playoff round. With three rounds remaining, Napoli’s best chance of admission might be winning the Europa League.

It drew 1-1 at Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk in the first leg of its semifinal and Rafa Benitez rested a number of players ahead of Thursday’s return match.

Napoli goalkeeper Mariano Andujar gifted Parma the lead in the ninth minute when he flapped at a corner, allowing Raffaele Palladino to turn into an empty net from close range.

Napoli leveled in the 28th after Marek Hamsik slotted the ball through to Manolo Gabbiadini. Antonio Mirante got a hand to the angled drive, but not enough to stop it rolling into the bottom left corner.

Parma swiftly restored its lead as a well-worked free kick allowed Cristobal Jorquera to fire in a screamer from 25 yards for his first Serie A goal in more than three years.

Mirante denied Napoli several times before and after Dries Mertens netted the equalizer in the 72nd with a solo effort.

In the Tuscan derby, Fiorentina was looking to bounce back after losing 3-0 at Sevilla in the Europa League and with four defeats in its past five Serie A matches.

Josip Ilicic took his tally to five goals in three league matches with a double, while Mohamed Salah was also on target for Fiorentina.

Riccardo Saponara, who also missed several opportunities, netted for Empoli as did substitute Levan Mchedlidze, a minute after coming off the bench.


Copyright © 2019 The Washington Times, LLC.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.

 

Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide