Italian Serie A News, Results, Analysis and Features on Football Soccer

Rocco Cammisola On September - 15 - 2011

Reflections On New And Improved Lazio

One hundred and ten days - or to be more precise 109 days, 22 hours and 10 minutes - is a long time for Lazio fans to wait to see their side compete in League action. Serie A fans were forced to wait an extra two weeks because of the players non-strike, but it turned out to be a wait worthwhile. Lazio traveled to the San Siro to face last season’s champions, Milan, in the effective Serie A opener last Friday night and they didn’t fail to entertain.

Lazio started extremely brightly, Stefano Mauri assisting two goals in twenty one minutes to put Lazio into an unbelievable lead. The goals themselves were shared out between the marquee signings of the biancocelesti’s summer mercato, Miroslav Klose grabbing the first with some exquisite touches to round Alessandro Nesta and Djibril Cisse rifling home the second. Lazio hadn’t beaten AC Milan away for some 22 years, and sadly for fans of the Aquile the streak continued with Milan clawing their way back into the game in the second half - Ibrahimovic and Cassano scoring the goals for the incumbent champions.

Signings were brought in to address the glaring goal deficiency last season that saw them miss out on the Champions League. There was plenty of speculation in the run up to the season start regarding whether or not the big signings would be a huge gamble that would see Lazio out of luck, but the displays in the Europa League playoff and now in the league suggest that it may have been a masterstroke.

Klose especially is renowned for failing to translate his prolific goalscoring form at International level - 62 goals in 112 matches - to his club performances - just 24 goals in 98 league games for Bayern Munich. The German led the line extremely well, providing an excellent outlet and a constant presence in the area. His link up play with Mauri and Hernanes was encouraging and his understanding with Cisse shows signs of coming to fruition in extraordinary ways.

Djibril Cisse had been sojourning in Greece for a couple of seasons and was scoring goals for fun, and it is accepted by many that this is probably the Frenchman’s final shot at a top 5 league. The two appear to have gelled very well already and Cisse has provided a little insight into the depth of their new relationship. “[Klose] speaks a little bit of English” said Cisse “we don’t stop speaking to each other, not even under the showers, after training we keep talking about what we need to improve.”

This morsel tells us, first of all that Cisse and Klose are smart lads who can speak a few languages, but it also illustrates hunger. Fans reading these quotes should be delighted that the highest paid players at the club they support are determined to prove themselves, they’ll no doubt have fun doing so if they can continue to score for the Rome club.

Lazio boss Edy Reja was justifiably optimistic after picking up a point in Milan, but was quick to point out that they can improve. The coach reflected on a few areas of Cisse’s match that could do with some work. “Cisse always tries to shoot at goal, he doesn’t think twice, and his shots are powerful.” remarked Reja. After Klose had been replaced - picking up a heel injury in the second half - Cisse wasted a number of Lazio’s few forays into the final third by meekly firing toward the Milan end, often a long way off target, when other options were available.

While there were criticisms from the boss Cisse will be aware of the clever runs he made against Milan, opening up space for many of his team mates and providing the Milan defence and Mark van Bommel plenty of food for thought. Sadly it seemed a lot of the time as though the rest of the Lazio players weren’t quite on the same wavelength, with passes often mistimed or incorrectly weighted.

While I’m sure Miro and Djibril will continue to enjoy good conversation, communication with the rest of the squad could turn this partnership from a good thing into a devastating force of nature.

Rocco Cammisola

Rocco is a football writer who follows football in England and Italy for a number of sites, including his own - The Football Express ( Most of his writing focuses on the lesser talked about teams, attempting to bring them to the world's attention.

More Posts - Website - Twitter

Comments are closed.

Featured Skills Video

    Write for Serie A Weekly!

    contribute Send us a timely, compelling post and we'll consider it for publishing on the site with mention of your name and social-media link.

    Click here to contact us.


Serie A Weekly recognises all copyrights contained. Where possible we acknowledge the copyright holder. If you own copyright to an image and object to its presence, contact the blog immediately using the "contact us" link at the top of this page. This blog is not responsible for the content of third party sites.