17th of April 2018 Author: Johnny Karp
Seventh-placed Fiorentina host fourth-placed Lazio at Artemio Franchi Stadium on Wednesday in a match that could decide the European future for both teams. The reverse fixture ended 1-1 in November as Khouma Babacar scored deep into stoppage time after Stefan de Vrij had opened the scoring for Lazio in the first half. The two teams have also met in the Italian Cup this season and Lazio won that match 1-0 thanks to an early goal from Senad Lulic. Lazio have won three of the last six direct matches in all competitions, while Fiorentina won just two.
Fiorentina have been in good form lately, they are unbeaten in their last eight league matches and have won six of them. However, last weekend they were held to a goalless draw at home my relegation candidates Spal, and that result leaves them two points behind sixth-placed AC Milan. Fiorentina are out of the race for a top-four spot, which grants qualification to the Champions League, but if they finish sixth they will play in next season's Europa League. Milan Badelj is the only injury concern for the home side.
Lazio are still convalescing after the shock elimination from the Europa League last week, they had a 4-2 lead from the first leg and also opened the scoring in Salzburg but then crumbled and let in four goals in twenty minutes. Last weekend they grabbed a goalless draw in the derby against Roma and that result leaves the race for the top four still very uncertain, with Lazio and Roma tied on 61 points and Inter just one point behind them. Stefan Radu is suspended for this match, while Ciro Immobile is an injury doubt.
Fiorentina: Sportiello - Milenkovic, Pezzella, Hugo, Biraghi - Benassi, Dabo, Veretout - Saponara - Chiesa, Simeone
Lazio: Strakosha - Felipe, De Vrij, Bastos - Marusic, Parolo, Leiva, Lulic - Alberto, Milinkovic-Savic - Immobile
My prediction: 1-1 draw.
Here are the odds for the match at Bet365:
Fiorentina win - 2.87
Draw - 3.39
Lazio win - 2.50
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What a win for Lazio...they've been always trailing during the course of that game but the characteriser and quality they've shown to turn things around are just amazing and a games like this could be decisive for your season too.
After that win I don't have any doubts Lazio would going to finish in top 4 despite the fears competition of the other two contenders.
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