SS Lazio – Atalanta Bergamo: Atalanta’s High Pressing forces Lazio Errors as Champions League dream continues in Bergamo (1-3)
Lazio’s Champions League hopes were blown to smithereens by a free-flowing, fast and clinical Atalanta team. Having had their press beaten throughout the early stages of the match, Atalanta tweaked their shape off the ball to create turnovers high up the pitch and overloaded the flanks, which created some excellent chances.
Tactical analysis and match report by Joel Parker.
The race for European places in Serie A has featured a lot over the past weeks on Between the Posts, with just seven points separating six teams at the top of the table. Atalanta are right in the driving seat for a top four finish, having recorded the most goals and expected goals in the entire league going into this match day. Getting points at the Stadio Olimpico would be another huge step in the right direction.
As for Lazio, inconsistent form and poor finishing of chances create meant that victory was a must if they are to compete in the Champions League. Simone Inzaghi made three changes to his 3-5-2 system following their 2-1 victory away to Sampdoria, the first being Adam Marušić replacing the veteran midfielder, Senad Lulić, due to suspension. Luis Alberto returned to the squad to add more creativity in midfield, whilst top scorer Ciro Immobile started upfront next to Felipe Caicedo.
Atalanta’s run of form has seen them go into this game unbeaten since February and scoring 37 goals away from home throughout the campaign. Gian Piero Gasperini made a subtle rotation in his system, going from a 3-4-2-1 formation to a 3-4-1-2 shape, enabling the number ten to drop into the midfield line when out of possession . . .