Both Reja and Ventura are veteran coaches and it was clear from the opening 25 minutes that both of them approached the match quire carefully trying to anticipate every move by the oposition players. As a result, the match was rather boring. We had to wait till 24th minute for the first (and excellent) chance when Diaz header the ball very close to Gillet`s right bar, following a cross from Hernanes from a set-piece. After that, ref could have awarded a penalty for Lazio when Floccari was trapped by a Bari player while running towards a good ball inside the penalty box – but the ref remained silent. Overall, this was a typical first half played by Lazio this season – mainly concentrated in exploiting the oposition but remaining on full alert in the middle and in particular in defense.
Lazio had a slight initiative in the beginning and was trying to find ways to approach Bari goal but without risking at the back. And one such occasion converted into a goal: Mauri received a ball half way into Bari`s half and served it in the box: all Bari defenders were covering Floccari and failed to notice Hernanes who took advantage of their horrible positioning – he received the ball – launched the shot and beat Gillet. 0-1. Credits should be given to Hernanes for positioning.
And while Bari players were in shock for this goal and trying to find ways to equalize as soon as possible, Lazio became more dangerous and through constant counter attacks endangered Gillet`s goal. 9 minutes after the first goal, here comes another similar quick counter: Lichsteiner received the ball and crossed in the box; a Bari defender managed to clear it but only to reach Mauri who fired a shot that touched Floccari and the ball, in a weird movement reached the goal and it was game and match for Lazio.
And again, just like in other matches, Lazio players managed to quite comfortably close the match with a lot of running and efficiency!