Just as yesterday the focus of the day was a preparatory game. Only 24 hours after sending his men out to play a Cadore selection, Vladimir Petkovic got a chance to see the team facing Montebelluna. The Serie D side would hopefully test the players a little more than the two weak opponents played so far and let the coach test some of his ideas more thoroughly.
Lazio started with an eleven very different from yesterday’s game: Marchetti, Konko, Diakite, Dias, Garrido, Gonzalez, Cana, Hernanes, Lulic, Zarate and Rocchi represented the team from start.
Lazio started off by creating plenty of chances, with Rocchi, Zarate, Gonzalez and Diakite all testing Careri in the Montebelluna goal without managing to open the scoring within the first quarter of the game.
22 minutes in Zarate opened the scoring, having had an easy time finding the back of the net as Rocchi found no 10 inside the box. Again the following applause signaled the emotional attachment the Lazio fans have displayed throughout the two weeks that Zarate has been back with the team.
Shortly after Rocchi could have doubled the scoring on two shots fired within a minute. First Zarate found the skipper inside the box, who hit the post with a nice shot, and shortly after Lulic served Rocchi, who this time was denied by Careri.
In the game building part, Hernanes today played in the role that we have been used to see Ledesma the last seasons in Lazio and just as noted yesterday the Brazilian looked a lot more comfortable when not having the share the time on the ball with neither Ledesma, Mauri nor Ederson. The freedom of moving forward, as Cana covered the back, proved to be successful for Hernanes, who got Lazio’s second goal with a shot from inside the penalty box after 33 minutes.
During the late parts of the first half the Serie D side managed to create a couple of decent scoring chances that Marchetti had to do his best to save.
At half time Petkovic carried out two substitutions, with Berardi replacing Marchetti and Cana moving down to the centre of defense, where Diakite was substituted for Onazi.
Lazio had major problems in creating any rhythm and flow in their game during the first 15 minutes of the second half and only the promoted Primavera player Onazi managed to show some skills and underline that Lotito should hurry up and sign an improved contract with the young Nigerian.
At 58’ Petkovic again opted for a mass substitution, where only Cana remained on the field from the starting formation. The last 30 minutes saw Berardi, Cavanda, Stendardo, Cana, Zauri, Candreva, Onazi, Ledesma, Mauri, Rozzi and Alfaro representing Lazio.
From close range one of the more impressive players so far during the ritiro, Candreva, made it 3-0 after six minutes on the pitch and shortly after Rozzi got his first goal of the evening as he made it 4-0 with a neat finish.
Following the two goals it was Alfaro who mostly got himself in good finishing positions, as the lone striker in a formation now more reminding of 4-2-3-1. The Uruguayan missed a few attempts, but saw Candreva and Ledesma link up well and the former nicely set up Rozzi for the youngsters second goal of the evening with 15 minutes left to play.
6-0 came through a penalty slotted home by Ledesma at 86’. Alfaro was brought down after having been first to get to a well weighed pass by Onazi from midfield, who overall looked very good during the last 30 minutes of the game.
Lazio will face Torino and Siena in a mini tournament the coming Wednesday and Thursday, games that will be closely monitored by Lazioland.com as the team continues the preparations for the 2012/2013 Serie A season.
Man of the Match: Antonio Rozzi
The youngster put in a great effort on the left side today topped with two goals.
Flop of the Match: Tomasso Rocchi
The capitano can not seem to get going this season. His partnership with Zarate did not seem to work like it did in their first season together at Lazio.