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Apr 27

Official derby-preview

Since I have nothing to add to the channel4 derby preview, I am brining it as in the original. Just a short note perhaps that yesterday, as usual on Thursdays, Lazio played a friendly in Formello against Bretti and won 10-0. Rocchi and Tare scored 3 goals each, Makinwa 2 and Zauri / Stendardo scored one each. Mauri did not play at all while Pandev was not in form at all. Here is the match preview:

An explosive Derby della Capitale is in prospect at the Stadio Olimpico on Sunday as second-placed Roma look to wrestle bragging rights from third-placed Lazio.

The Scudetto dream may be dead but this game is no less crucial for the Roma fans and players. Despite the inevitable sense of anti-climax, Luciano Spalletti’s side will be desperate to avenge Week 15’s shock defeat against the old enemy and guarantee a second-placed finish in the process.

After a superb campaign, the Lupi owe it to themselves to finish with a fluourish and also need to remain upbeat ahead of the imminent Coppa Italia Final clash with Inter. Victory here would be just the boost they need.

Lazio have exceeded pre-season expectations and look set to join their neighbours in next season’s Champions League. The Biancocelesti are going from strength to strength under Delio Rossi and despite last weekend’s 1-0 defeat against Fiorentina, they hold a seven-point advantage over fifth-placed Palermo.

Having shared the spoils with Ascoli and Chievo, and with Inter still to play in a fortnight’s time, the Aquile may be running out of steam. While overhauling Roma and stealing automatic qualification for the Champions League group stage looks unrealistic, a win would seal a glorious double over their bitter rivals which would live long in the memory.

December’s derby day saw Lazio stun Spalletti’s men 3-0. Cristian Ledesma excelled and opened the scoring with a vicious swerving strike. Unfortunately, events on the pitch were once again marred by violent scenes in and around the stadium.

Roma face a nervous wait to see whether the talismanic Francesco Totti will be available. The Giallorossi’s captain missed out against Atalanta and has been absent from training with a back problem, but he’s likely to start even if he’s not fully fit. Marco Cassetti is suspended and is joined by Matteo Ferrari after a harsh dismissal last weekend. However, Philippe Mexes, Amantino Mancini and David Pizarro all return from bans.

Rossi must do without midfielders Stefano Mauri and Gaby Mudingayi – who are sidelined – and is waiting on a late fitness test to see whether Guglielmo Stendardo can shake off a muscular problem. Brazilian stopper Emilson Cribari is back from injury, but after two months of inactivity is unlikely to return in a derby.

  http://www.channel4.com/sport/football_italia/sa0607/rom-laz.html

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