Nov 29, 2020 at 11.30am UK
Immobile (74' pen.)
Fares (45'), Leiva (77'), Akpa-Akpro (90+3')
FT(HT: 0-2)
Arslan (18'), Pussetto (45+3'), Forestieri (71')
Arslan (32'), Pereyra (45'), Samir (45+3'), Musso (73')

Preview: Lazio vs. Udinese - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Lazio vs. Udinese - prediction, team news, lineups: ID:423753: from db_amp
Sports Mole previews Sunday's Serie A clash between Lazio and Udinese, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Targeting their fourth win in five league games, resurgent Lazio take on struggling Udinese at Stadio Olimpico on Sunday.

Simone Inzaghi's side face a gradually improving Bianconeri, who are seeking a third Serie A clean sheet in a row for the first time since 2014.

Match preview

Lazio's recent revival after a complicated start to the season continued this week - at home and in Europe. Once they had taken care of bottom side Crotone at the weekend, the Biancocelesti then saw off Russia's Zenit St Petersburg on Tuesday.

Star striker Ciro Immobile returned from a turbulent and rumour-filled quarantine period without missing a beat - finishing clinically in both matches to lift Lazio to eighth in the tightly-packed table as well as put them within reach of the Champions League last 16.

Last season's capocannoniere, the former Borussia Dortmund man is now up to seven goals in eight appearances, with two assists. He is something of a specialist against Udinese too, having been involved in 11 goals in 10 previous Serie A games against the Friulians - with eight goals and three assists.

His manager, Simone Inzaghi, has had to call upon his reserves of skill and experience in order to make up for a seemingly endless stream of absences this term - primarily in defence but also to key members of his potent attacking unit. The return of standard bearers such as Immobile and Luis Alberto has since coincided with a quick upturn in results.

The Aquile are unbeaten in their last 11 Serie A games against Sunday's opponents Udinese - winning nine and keeping nine clean sheets in that run - and under Inzaghi, Lazio have racked up seven wins in eight league matches against the Zebrette.

He will be doubly keen to continue that dominance, as his charges have picked up a meagre five points in their first four home league games - their lowest total at this stage since 2011-12. Udinese have registered just a solitary point on the road so far, which clarifies the need for Lazio to capitalise on home advantage - albeit in a near-deserted Olimpico.

As if to confirm their travelling travails, Udinese's prior record in this fixture is unimpressive too. They have failed to even score a goal in any of their last five away games against Lazio, losing all five.

This season has so far been an uphill struggle for Luca Gotti's men - incidentally the only club, along with Bologna, not to have registered a positive COVID-19 test – who have won just seven points in eight games to lie just above the drop zone.

Udinese moved the right side of the relegation line with a narrow win over Genoa last week thanks to star man Rodrigo De Paul's goal, in the process keeping their second consecutive clean sheet. In the previous weeks, they suffered narrow defeats to both Milan and Fiorentina as key defensive personnel returned from injury to boost the squad.

During midweek, they once more lost to the Viola - now under new manager Cesare Prandelli - in the Coppa Italia, falling to an extra time Tofol Montiel goal. With only the league left to concentrate on, Udinese now face a potential season-long slog to avoid a relegation battle and attain mid-table respectability.

Following this trip to Rome and a home encounter with Atalanta, the Bianconeri will be engaged in clashes with direct rivals Torino and Crotone, which is where Gotti will instead be targeting maximum points. Merely avoiding defeat on Sunday afternoon will be seen as something of a bonus for his side, which despite a handful of talented players are unlikely to score enough goals to trouble the top half.

In fact, no other teams have scored fewer than both Udinese and their hosts in the first half of league games in 2020-21 so far - just three each - so this game could well be a slow burner, with Lazio the favourites to turn up the heat in the second half.

Lazio Serie A form: DLWWDW
Lazio form (all competitions): DWDDWW

Udinese Serie A form: LWLLDW
Udinese form (all competitions): LWLDWL

Team News

A more or less full squad - something of a novelty for Lazio's Simone Inzaghi this season - is available for the hosts. Sergej Milinkovic-Savic should return from self-isolation, while Gonzalo Escalante has recovered from injury.

However, Kosovar striker Vedat Muriqi picked up a thigh injury versus Zenit and faces tests to determine his availability before kickoff. Senad Lulic (ankle) is close to a return but may not quite be ready for a spot on the bench.

Milinkovic-Savic, Luis Alberto and Lucas Leiva are expected to make up the midfield three, with Ciro Immobile and Joaquin Correa up front in Inzaghi's standard 3-5-2.

Udinese coach Luca Gotti must do without midfielders Walace and Mamadou Coulibaly, as his side mirror Lazio's formation.

Striker Kevin Lasagna strained his knee in Coppa Italia action this week and will undergo pre-match tests, though Stefano Okaka and Ignacio Pussetto are favourites to start up front in any case.

Lazio possible starting lineup:
Strakosha; Patric, Acerbi, Radu; Lazzari, Milinkovic-Savic, Leiva, Alberto, Fares; Correa, Immobile

Udinese possible starting lineup:
Musso; Becao, Nuytinck, Samir; Larsen, De Paul, Arslan, Pereyra, Zeegelaar; Pussetto, Okaka

We say: Lazio 2-1 Udinese

The visitors' woeful away record speaks for itself, so Lazio must take advantage of their building momentum to take maximum points on Sunday.

With the potential return of Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, last year's key attacking threats will be back in harness at the Olimpico and goals are almost a guarantee when Ciro Immobile takes to the field in a sky blue jersey.

Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 1.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Over 1.5:data

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last updated article - 2020-11-27 19:36:08:
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Serie A Table
1 38287389355491
2 38247774413379
3 38239690474378
4 38239677383978
5 38245986414577
6 38215126155668
7 381881268581062
8 381711106456862
9 38157165254-252
10 381112154648-245
11 381012164758-1142
12 381011175165-1441
13 38913164759-1240
14 381010184258-1640
15 38912175272-2039
16 38910194359-1637
17 38716155069-1937
18 38712194075-3533
19 3865274592-4723
20 38311243983-4420
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