Lazio are the visitors to the Stadio Artemio Franchi on Sunday evening in Week 9 of Serie A, when Fiorentina will be looking to extend their six-game unbeaten run in the league. Take a look at our collection of ten key facts on the clash to get you in the mood for the late kick-off on Sunday!
1. The first Fiorentina v Lazio fixture in Serie was played on 1 November 1931, with Uruguayan striker Pedro Petrone scoring twice to give the Viola a 2-0 win. Fiorentina went on to secure an impressive fourth-place finish that year – level with AC Milan – while Lazio ended up joint-13th with Triestina and Pro Vercelli. Petrone would win the Serie A top scorer gong at the end of the 1931/32 season, netting 25 goals to share the prize with Bologna’s Angelo Schiavio.
2. Fiorentina have hosted Lazio 77 times in total, winning 36, drawing 21 and losing 28 of those games and scoring 128 goals and conceding 85 along the way. That said, since the 1968/69 season, Lazio have racked up more wins in Florence than any other team: 15 in the last 50 years. That’s one more than AC Milan and Juventus, who are both on 14. But that’s not all: of those 15 wins, 11 have occurred since 2000, with seven taking place in the last 14 years. We’ll need to be on our game on Sunday…
3. Fiorentina and Lazio have faced off twice in the final of the Coppa Italia, with both sides winning one title each. Lazio won the cup in the 1957/58 season, courtesy of a Maurilio Prini winner in Rome (two years after Prini had won the Scudetto with Fiorentina). Meanwhile, Fiorentina’s cup triumph came on 11 June 1961, with Gianfranco Petris and Gigi Milan on target to secure a 2-0 win in Florence.
4. Fiorentina v Lazio brings to mind two of the most famous club icons in Italian football history: Giancarlo Antognoni and Giorgio Chinaglia. Both players represented only one club in Serie A, Antognoni spending 15 seasons with Fiorentina while Chinaglia – nicknamed “Long John” by the Lazio fans – spent seven with the Biancocelesti. The two players went head to head just five times in Serie A, with the record reading one win apiece and three draws.
5. Both Fiorentina v Lazio fixtures in the 1947/48 and 1948/49 seasons saw plenty of goals – with Fiorentina getting the win on both occasions. On 25 January 1948, Fiorentina beat Lazio 4-1 thanks to braces from Angelo Bollano and Alberto Galassi. The Viola then followed that up with a 4-0 win on 2 January 1949: Galassi struck three times on that occasion, with Augusto Magli adding the fourth. Born in Todi in 1922, Galassi spent five seasons at Fiorentina between 1947 and 1952, racking up 135 appearances in Serie A and scoring 63 goals. He passed away in Florence in 2002 at the age of 80.
6. The legendary Gabriel Omar Batistuta was a key player in this fixture in the 1998/99 and 1999/2000 seasons. Bati’s equaliser on 15 May 1999 meant Sven-Goran Eriksson’s Lazio had to settle for a 1-1 draw which cost them the Scudetto title, while the Argentina found the target twice on 15 April 2000 in a spectacular 3-3 draw (Enrico Chiesa got the other goal for the Viola), though that season did culminate in a title win for Eriksson’s men.
7. Another striker to have gone down in the history of this fixture – for better and for worse – was Claudio Desolati in the mid-1970s. On 3 March 1974, a 19-year-old Desolati put Fiorentina ahead on 41 minutes, only for Chinaglia to equalise from the spot on 64 minutes. It was a pulsating game between Tommaso Maestrelli’s Lazio side, who would go on to win the title, and Luigi Radici’s Fiorentina, a team that brimmed with the enthusiasm of youth and would finish the season in sixth place. A year later, Fiorentina and Lazio were again locked in a 1-1 draw (Antognoni had responded to Chinaglia’s opener) when the Viola were awarded a penalty on 85 minutes: up stepped Desolati, only to crash the spot-kick off the bar. To be fair, Desolati did redeem himself with two goals in Fiorentina’s 2-1 win over Lazio at the Stadio Olimpico the following season.
8. That man again. Gabriel Batistuta was honoured by the Curva Fiesole ahead of a 2-0 win over Lazio on 5 November 1995, when the fans unveiled a papier-mache statute with the inscription: “Untamed warrior, strong in the fight, loyal in spirit.” The Argentine reciprocated in his own way: with two goals. The statue was destroyed a few years later, perhaps in the wake of Batistuta’s move to Roma. But Batistuta’s relationship with Florence has now been repaired, as shown by the recent celebrations in Piazza Signoria for his 50th birthday.
9. Fiorentina’s 3-0 win over Lazio on 20 January 1985 was memorable for the thick covering of snow in the stands and the fact that one of the goals was scored by Socrates. In his only season with the Viola, Socrates scored six goals in Serie A, two in the UEFA Cup and one in the Coppa Italia. That day, Fiorentina – led by Ferruccio Valcareggi (who had replaced Giancarlo De Sisti with 12 games played) – got the three points thanks to goals from Socrates, Claudio Pellegrini and Paolone Monelli. Socrates was nicknamed the “Doctor”, having obtained a degree in medicine in Brazil – though he never practised. Incidentally Socrates showed his medical instinct in that game against Lazio by helping a stricken Lionello Manfredonia from the field.
10. The last meeting between Fiorentina and Lazio at the Stadio Artemio Franchi finished in a 1-1 draw, with Ciro Immobile’s 23rd-minute opener cancelled out by Luis Muriel just after the hour mark. The draw came a week after the Viola’s 3-1 defeat against Atalanta in Bergamo, a result that definitively ended the team’s hopes of qualifying for the Europa League. It was also the Colombian’s last goal for Fiorentina before joining Atalanta in the summer: he scored six goals in the league and three in the Coppa Italia for the Viola.
Published: Fri, 25 Oct 2019 19:14:00 +0200
Source: Fiorentina Official website en.violachannel.tv