Preview: Inter vs Lazio – Team News, Lineups & Prediction

The time has come for new Serie A champions Inter to wave goodbye to the Giuseppe Meazza faithful as Lazio roll into town on Sunday. As the season draws to a close, Simone Inzaghi’s men chase more records after lifting their 20th Scudetto. 

Unfazed by a shock 1-0 defeat at Sassuolo, incidentally the only side to have beaten Inter in their home season finale across the last ten campaigns (W9), Nerazzuri walloped relegation-battling Frosinone 5-0 in the previous round. As we enter the penultimate matchday, Neroverdi are the only team to take three points at Meazza this season (W14, D3). 

Tajon Buchanan netted his first Serie A goal at Stadio Benito Stirpe, leaving Inter in contention for 31 top-flight wins in a single season for the first time in the club’s storied history. With two games left, Inzaghi’s charges have no wriggle room if they’re to achieve that feat, and it’s hard to imagine them falling short of this achievement. 

On the other hand, armed with a six-game unbeaten streak (W5, D1), visiting Lazio will be out to replicate Sassuolo’s heroics and put more wind in their sails amidst an eye-catching resurgence under new boss Igor Tudor. Former Inter midfield Matias Vecino capped off Lazio’s 2-0 home triumph against Empoli last weekend, putting them on the brink of Europa League qualification.

But the job is not quite done yet, with Biancocelesti still needing a win at Meazza to seal a Europa League berth. Otherwise, they’d have to hope for favorable outcomes on other venues or see off second-from-bottom Sassuolo on the final day. Both scenarios seemingly favor Lazio for success. 

Match Preview

Inter

An emphatic triumph at Frosinone etched Inter in Serie A folklore, making them only the second side in league history to amass 4,600 points. It’s been a memorable campaign for Nerazzurri, even though they relinquished a two-year stranglehold on the Coppa Italia and bowed out of the Champions League in the quarter-finals. 

In Serie A, it’s been all flowers and rainbows. As bizarre as it sounds, only relegation-threatened Sassuolo have got the better of Inter in 36 rounds thus far (W29, D5). Since Neroverdi’s triumph at Meazza in 2018, Inzaghi’s men have won their final home league game of the season in the last five campaigns. 

Another triumphant weekend is on the cards, with Inter putting Lazio to the sword already twice this season. After a 2-0 win in December’s reverse fixture at the Stadio Olimpico, the champions tore Biancocelesti to pieces in the Supercoppa Italiana, running out 3-0 victors in January.

Lazio

Despite not losing back-to-back league meetings with Inter since 2019, Lazio fans have every reason for concern ahead of this trip. Tudor’s men have lost all four Serie A visits to Meazza since May 2019, conceding multiple goals in the last three. Their recent away form doesn’t offer much comfort either.

Except for a 1-0 victory at Genoa, Biancocelesti have failed to win three of their last four competitive matches on the road (D1, L2), drawing a blank in both losses. Moreover, each of Lazio’s six Serie A visits to the current top-six sides this season has ended in defeat, casting further doubt on their bid to upset the apple cart. 

Lazio can at least hope to keep the game competitive in the first half. Eight of the last ten Serie A encounters between Inter and Biancocelesti have produced precisely one first-half goal. 

Team News

Everyone but ex-Lazio center-back Francesco Acerbi is fit and ready for this clash. The only question is whether Inter boss Inzaghi will bring Hakan Calhanoglu back to the starting XI after replacing him with Kristjan Asllani in the last two matches.

As for Lazio, third-choice goalkeeper Luigi Sepe is in the treatment room with an injury. But the real problem for Tudor is the absence of star defender Alessio Romagnoli, who accumulated yellow cards against Empoli. 

Inter vs Lazio Potential Lineups

Inter (3-5-2): Yann Sommer; Yann Bisseck, Stefan de Vrij, Carlos Augusto; Matteo Darmian, Davide Frattesi, Kristjan Asllani, Nicolo Barella, Federico Dimarco; Marcus Thuram, Marko Arnautovic.

Lazio (3-4-2-1): Christos Mandas; Patric, Nicolo Casale, Elseid Hysaj; Manuel Lazzari, Matteo Guendouzi, Daichi Kamada, Adam Marusic; Felipe Anderson, Mattia Zaccagni; Ciro Immobile.

Inter vs Lazio Prediction

With all due respect to Tudor’s fine work in the capital, Inter are on another level, and anything other than Nerazzurri’s win on home turf would be a surprise.

Prediction: Inter Win

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