Lichtsteiner 6 (L), Cruz 72 (L)
Lazio have put the crisis behind them with a second consecutive victory, including Julio Cruz scoring the moment he came off the bench.
This had become a relegation dogfight and a six-pointer for both sides. Lazio needed to get away from the drop zone and were boosted by Sunday’s 2-0 victory in Cagliari, while Siena’s recent good form had lifted them off the foot of the table. The Tuscans were unbeaten in six, but had never managed to conquer the Olimpico before with four draws and as many defeats.
Mauro Zarate’s two-match ban had expired, so he returned although Sergio Floccari, Ousmane Dabo, Mourad Meghni, Pasquale Foggia, Christian Manfredini, Francelino Matuzalem, Sebastiano Siviglia and the suspended Giuseppe Biava missed out.
Lazio took the lead with Stefan Lichtsteiner, a rare goalscorer for the club. A long Stefano Mauri cross from the left went over Tommaso Rocchi to find Lichtsteiner ready to prod home from six yards with his weaker left foot.
Soon after Stefano Mauri came sliding in to a Cristian Brocchi through ball, forcing a point-blank save out of Gianluca Curci.
Zarate stung Curci’s palms after Emilson Sanchez Cribari’s error released the Argentine and Rocchi’s daisy-cutter shaved a coat of paint off the base of the far post 60 seconds later.
A scuffle broke out on 23 minutes, as the tension got to these teams, earning bookings for Aleandro Rosi and Aleksandar Kolarov.
Lazio should’ve scored with a classic counter-attack sparked by Brocchi, but Rocchi fired straight at the goalkeeper one-on-one.
Siena did precious little in the first half and introduced Reginaldo for a more attacking line-up and immediately went close with Marcelo Larrondo.
Rocchi’s snapshot and an Emanuele Calaio’ failed to really trouble the goalkeepers, but Larrondo pounced on a Gugliemo Stendardo error only for the defender to make up for it with a crucial block.
Julio Ricardo Cruz replaced Zarate and scored with his first touch! He had been on the field for only around 10 seconds when he turned a fantastic overhead kick from a corner in from seven yards.
Mauri could’ve made it 3-0, but his delightful lob was palmed out from under the crossbar by Curci.
Lazio: Muslera; Dias, Stendardo, Radu; Lichtsteiner, Brocchi, Ledesma (Baronio 91), Mauri, Kolarov; Zarate (Cruz 72), Rocchi (Foggia 84)
Siena: Curci; Odibe, Cribari, Pratali (Reginaldo 46); Del Grosso (Calaio’ 54), Rosi, Vergassola, Tziolis; Ghezzal; Maccarone, Larrondo (Fini 80)