Rome, Dec 27: Lazio edged Fiorentina 1-0 here to become the first team to qualify for the semi-finals of the Coppa Italia 2017-18.
Playing in front of 30,000 people at Rome’s Olympic stadium on Tuesday, the hosts took an early lead thanks to Senad Lulic’s goal in the sixth minute, reports Efe.
The Bosnian international eluded Fiorentina defender Bruno Gaspar in the box before tucking the ball inside the far post.
Despite losing Felipe Caicedo to injury in the 26th minute, Lazio remained firmly in control and came close to doubling their lead right before half-time.
Fiorentina’s attack, led by substitute Giovanni Simeone, was better in the second half. Their best chance came in the 65th minute, when Italian U-21 standout winger Federico Chiesa loosed a curving shot from the edge of the box, forcing a decisive stop from Lazio goalkeeper Thomas Strakosha.
Still smarting from conceding the equalizer on a penalty in the final minute of their recent Serie A match with Fiorentina, Simone Inzaghi-coached Lazio defended tenaciously to see out the win.
Lazio’s opponent in the two-leg Coppa Italia semi-final will be the winner of Wednesday’s Milan derby.
The other two quarter-finals are set for next week, when Serie A leaders Napoli will face Atalanta and defending champions Juventus square off against cross-town rivals Torino.