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Mar 21, 2021 at 2pm UK

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

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

Lazio will travel to Udinese on Sunday afternoon hoping to claim their first away victory in Serie A since January and move closer to the Champions League qualification places.

Meanwhile, the Zebrette have put together a strong run of form at the Stadio Friuli, keeping clean sheets in each of their last four games and winning each of their last three.

Match preview

Udinese extended their unbeaten league run to five matches with a 1-1 draw away at Genoa last weekend.

Rodrigo De Paul's converted penalty rescued a point for the visitors after they conceded an early goal through Goran Pandev and that result saw the Zebrette climb into the top half of the table for the first time since mid-December.

Luca Gotti's side have improved during the second half of this season, accumulating 15 points from their last eight matches, with only Inter Milan, Juventus, Atalanta and Napoli picking up more points in that period.

Udinese have already beaten Lazio in the reverse fixture earlier this season, winning 3-1 at the Stadio Olimpico, and are looking to claim their first league double against the Aquile since the 2004-05 campaign.

The Zebrette's chances of securing a top-six place are extremely unlikely but claiming another victory this weekend and continuing their impressive run of form could provide a strong platform that they can build on heading into next season.

Lazio's Champions League run was seemingly over when they were convincingly beaten 4-1 against current holders Bayern Munich three weeks ago, and their elimination from the competition at the round of 16 stage was confirmed on Wednesday night when they lost 2-1 in the second leg, going down 6-2 on aggregate.

Simone Inzaghi's side will now be fully focused on the final 12 Serie A matches of the campaign, with the Aquile embroiled in another battle to qualify for the top four.

Lazio had lost ground in the race for European qualification after a run of three league defeats from four games, but they bounced back against basement club Crotone last Friday, with Felipe Caicedo's late winner securing a slender 3-2 victory on home soil.

The Biancocelesti are currently six points behind Atalanta, who currently occupy fourth place, and Inzaghi will be aware that performances must improve if they are to avoid slipping further behind.

Lazio travel to Udinese having lost each of their last three Serie A away games, conceding eight goals in the process.

Ending this run with a victory on Sunday would see the Aquile remain in seventh and move to within one point of city rivals Roma.

Udinese Serie A form:
  • L
  • D
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • D

Lazio Serie A form:
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • W

Lazio form (all competitions):
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • W
  • L

Team News

Udinese centre-back Samir is currently nursing a thigh strain so will be unavailable for Sunday's match, while Ignacio Pussetto, Thomas Ouwejan and Gerard Deulofeu are all absent with injuries.

Nahuel Molina is expected to keep his place at left wing-back ahead of Marvin Zeegelaar, while attacking midfielder Roberto Pereyra could continue in his role just behind target man Fernando Llorente.

Lazio defenders Luiz Felipe (ankle) and Mohamed Fares (knee) are both unavailable for selection, but Manuel Lazzari could be in contention to start if he passes a late fitness test after suffering with a calf problem.

Lucas Leiva and Ciro Immobile were both rested in midweek but are expected to start this weekend at the expense of Gonzalo Escalante and Joaquin Correa respectively.

Udinese possible starting lineup:
Musso; Becao, Bonifazi, Nuytinck; Molina, De Paul, Arslan, Walace, Larsen; Pereyra; Llorente

Lazio possible starting lineup:
Reina; Patric, Acerbi, Radu; Lazzari, Milinkovic-Savic, Leiva, Alberto, Marusic; Caicedo, Immobile

We say: Udinese 2-2 Lazio

Lazio will be keen to build on their victory over Crotone as they hope to stay in contention for a return to European competition next season.

However, they face a difficult challenge against an in-form Udinese outfit, who are set to cause problems once again, as they did against the Aquile in November. We can see both teams scoring on Sunday, but neither side may have enough to take all three points at the Stadio Friuli.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a double chance bet on a draw or an away win 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.Draw/Away:data

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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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La Liga Table
1 38268467254286
2 38259467283984
3 38247785384779
4 38245953332077
5 3817111059382162
6 381710115050061
7 3815131060441658
8 381411135557-253
9 38137184765-1846
10 381113144642446
11 381111163748-1144
12 381111163658-2244
13 381013155053-343
14 38914154657-1141
15 38911182843-1538
16 38911183657-2138
17 38812183455-2136
18 38713183453-1934
19 38516173457-2331
20 38612202952-2330
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