Lazio vs Atalanta - Italian Serie A Preview

Monday, May 13th, 2019

By Jonathan Willis
Serie A Lazio vs. Atalanta

Atalanta are looking to win their first trophy in nearly 60 years. The small club in Lombardy has risen to new heights under manager Gian Piero Gasperini over the past three seasons, and they are now on the precipice of winning their first trophy since winning the Coppa Italia in 1962-63. Atalanta have defeated Lazio in both of their previous meetings this season, and one more win over the capital club this season will give them a piece of hardware.

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Lazio vs. Atalanta

  • Date and Time: May 15, 2019, 2:45 p.m. ET
  • Location: Stadio Olimpico, Rome Italy
  • US Television Coverage: ESPN2
  • Betting Line: Atalanta PK -117, O/U 2.5 and 3
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The nominal hosts have won the Coppa Italia quite a few times in recent years. Lazio have won this competition six times, and five of those six times have come in the last 20 seasons. Due to their standing in Serie A last season, they didn’t enter the competition until the Round of 16, so they didn’t have to play many opponents to reach the final. Lazio relied on their defense to beat third-tier Novara 4-1 in the Round of 16, and they knocked off both Milan clubs by razor thin margins in the last two rounds.

The one thing Atalanta has been able to do well all year is score goals. This club is the only Serie A team averaging more than two goals per game, and they have relied on their attacking throughout the Coppa Italia. Atalanta bested Cagliari 2-0 in the Round of 16 before stunning Juventus 3-0 in the quarterfinals to send the team that had won four straight Italian Cups crashing out of this year’s competition. Fiorentina nearly beat them at their own game in the semifinals, but Atalanta eventually held on to a 5-4 aggregate win over two legs.

These two sides played a little over a week ago in this same venue. In that game, Lazio struck first with a Marco Parolo goal in the third minute, but that was all the good news Lazio would have on the day. Duvan Zapata evened the score in the 22nd minute, and Timothy Castagne and an own goal from Wallace led to a 3-1 win for Atalanta.

Key Absences

Atalanta have not had Marco Varnier all season long after he suffered an ACL injury in July, and he is unlikely to return here. Rafael Toloi is listed as questionable due to a sprained ankle. Lazio may not have Thomas Strakosha, Patric, Valon Berisha, and Jordan Lukaku available for this match. Sergej Milinkovic-Savic is listed as probable to play.

Lazio Player to Watch

Ciro Immobile has found a way to contribute this season. Immobile has not been as consistent of a finisher as we have seen in the past, so he has done his best to set up his teammates. He has notched 11 assists in all competitions for Lazio this year, and he set up Joaquin Correa for the club’s lone goal against AC Milan in the semifinals. Immobile will need to create against an Atalanta team that will score.

Atalanta Player to Watch

Duvan Zapata has had a standout year with Atalanta this season. The Colombian international scored 11 goals for Sampdoria last season, but he is currently on pace to finish second in the league in goals this year. Zapata has 22 goals and seven assists, and he is the focal point of Atalanta’s dynamic attack.

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Lazio vs. Atalanta Free Picks

Even though this is essentially a home game for Lazio, I like Atalanta’s chances. They continue to be in strong form, while Lazio have lost three of their last six matches and have recently dropped games to Chievo and SPAL.

Lazio vs. Atalanta Prediction: Atalanta 2, Lazio 1

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