Lazio head into the final day of the Serie A campaign capable of finishing second in the league table. The Biancocelesti are fourth in Serie A currently and a win over Napoli can take them higher up to table. Their final position will depend on the result of Atalanta versus Inter Milan. A Lazio win and a draw between the other teams would allow Simone Inzaghi’s team to finish runners-up. Of course, there is a chance Lazio will ultimately finish fourth.
Coppa Italia winners Napoli will be out to upset Lazio’s attempts to finish second. Napoli are seventh in the league heading into the final day of the campaign. They cannot reach sixth nor fall to eighth. Gennaro Gattuso’s team will play in the Europa League next season but only due to their cup win.
The two clubs have met twice already this season in Serie A and Coppa Italia matches. The home team won both games as Lazio claimed a win at the Stadio Olimpico before losing in the Coppa Italia at the San Paolo.
Both fixtures finished 1-0 earlier this season. The five matches prior to this season’s fixtures did finish with over 2.5 goals scored. Will the trend of under 2.5 goals continue or will these clubs manage a big scoreline?
Napoli have recorded a respectable home points total of 30. The Partenopei are unbeaten in their last six Serie A games and go into Saturday’s game in form. They have bagged back to back home games winning by a combined scoreline 4-1. They have claimed 28 goals scored and conceded 23 times.
Lazio have recorded Serie A’s fourth-best away points total. They have tallied 33 points from 54 possible. However, Lazio’s form since the Serie A restart has been poor. Their form after restart is the leading reason Lazio fell off the title chase. Had Serie A not gone on hiatus, there is a strong possibility that Lazio could have won the title. The Biancocelesti have posted a +10-goal difference on their travels.
Napoli have a brilliant record against Lazio going unbeaten in nine of their last 10 matches. Eight of those nine matches ended in wins for Napoli. In addition, six of their last 10 games ended with over 2.5 goals scored.
Although Lazio’s form has been poor since the Serie A restart, they are on a three-game winning streak. With the Scudetto sorted and Juventus winning another, Lazio are suddenly playing without pressure. Napoli are gearing up for their second leg Champions League last 16 match versus Barcelona. The clubs are level 1-1 but Napoli trail on away goals.
Just weeks ago, there were fears that forward Dries Mertens would be out long-term with an injury. However, the forward looks to be fit and ready to play. Mertens could be rested against Lazio in preparation for the Barcelona second leg match.
Gattuso could be without Nikola Masksimovic, Konstantinos Manolas, and Fernando Llorente. All three are dealing with their own injury and fitness issues leading up to the final day. Gattuso could rest any of the trio in preparation for the game versus Barcelona next week.
Lazio have three players set to miss the fixture. Stefan Radu has a shin injury and though listed as possibly returning in late July, is likely to miss the game. Lucas Leiva and Senad Lulic are also expected to miss the game through injuries.
Ciro Immobile is one game away from winning the Serie A Golden Boot Award. The striker has bagged 35 goals tallying 45% of Lazio’s goals. He is four goals ahead of Ronaldo and will aim to core another goal this weekend to win the award. Immobile is not for sell according to Lazio executives. A shock piece of news emerged this week that David Silva, a free agent, could join Lazio for next term.
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Although the last two games between these sides finished in wins to nil, their previous four matches ended with both teams scoring goals. This is an important game for both clubs. Lazio want to finish as Serie A runners-up, which they can do. Meanwhile, Napoli have a massive Champions League second leg fixture against Barcelona coming up next week.
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Saturday’s game will be a tune-up for Napoli and they will want to keep the momentum going. Although Napoli lost to Inter Milan in midweek, 2-0 away, they had been in decent form. Lazio are on three-game winning streak. They have achieved Champions League football for next term already and can finish the term strongly in second to build momentum for next season.
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Immobile has had a brilliant season and continues to show why he is one of the best strikers in Europe. He has shown in Italy throughout his career although playing in Germany and Spain didn’t suit him. Immobile has scored nearly a goal a game in Serie A. Immobile has tallied 35 goals in 36 Serie A matches. He has 38 in 41 games in all competitions. Immobile has scored six goals in four straight games in the league. Can he get another and win the Golden Boot Award.
Both teams have plenty to play for. Lazio need a win to finish second in Serie A. Meanwhile, Napoli need a good performance to prepare for their Champions League second leg match versus Barcelona. The home team have won the last three games between these clubs. Will it happen again this time around?
Lazio have struggled against Napoli in their last 10 meetings. They haven’t won at the San Paolo since the 2014-15 season. That trend should end at the weekend as Lazio pick up a big win away against Napoli and improve their hopes of finishing second.
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The Stadium that will host Napoli vs Lazio is the Stadio Olimpico. This is the home ground of Napoli.
The match between Napoli and Lazio kicks-off at 19:45 UK time on Saturday 1at August