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Roma slips in 3-1 derby loss to Lazio

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The Derby della Capitale went Lazio’s way, all but shattering any hopes Roma had of catching Juventus for the Scudetto as Keita Balde scored a brace in the 3-1 win.

Balde is absolutely on fire, with now five goals in his last two matches. His brace comes on the heels of a hat-trick in a 6-2 win over Palermo last time out.

The 22-year-old Senegalese international scored his first just 12 minutes in thanks to some horrid defending from Roma’s Emerson, and Balde cut the ball inside the near post to the surprise of Wojciech Szczesny. His second killed off the game in the 85th minute on the break, as Senad Lulic unselfishly gave it up to Balde on the 2-on-1 for an easy finish.

With Balde’s first the only score of the first half, Roma had momentarily pulled back level on a Daniele de Rossi penalty moments after the break, but it was Dusan Basta to provide the eventual winner just five minutes later. The goal was a bit generous, as his hit at the top of the box took a huge deflection off Federico Fazio and looped into the top corner.

Roma dominated possession throughout, but they were locked down, as Lazio matched them on the shot count despite finding themselves on the back foot for much of the game. Roma also saw Antonio Rudiger sent off in the dying minutes of the game for a very high boot that caught Lazio substitute Filip Djordjevic directly in the shin.

The loss paired with Rudiger’s impeding suspension means that Roma must now change its focus from looking ahead towards Juventus and instead over their shoulder. With a brutal run-in for Roma remaining, including games against AC Milan, Juventus, and Chievo Verona left on the schedule, they will be tested to hold their four-point lead over Napoli, who also has a game in hand.

After a day on sale, Lazio has sold 11 season tickets for the upcoming season

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Lazio fans are known for being harsh on their club. They’re currently unhappy, and it’s showing.

Upset about the current lack of transfer activity and the botched hiring of Marcelo Bielsa, fans have taken to boycotting the newly offered season ticket packages, and it’s working.

According to reports in Italy, including Gazzetta dello Sport, the club sold just 11 season tickets on the first day of offering.

This isn’t the first time Lazio has struggled to sell tickets. Last season, the club sold a record low 12,800 season tickets last year, with just 9,000 sold before the season began, which at the time was below Torino, Udinese, Hellas Verona, Genoa, and Bologna.

Fans have been particularly upset with owner Claudio Lotito over the Bielsa fiasco, with supporters protesting in the streets after Bielsa resigned just two days after being appointed as manager. Lotito laid into Bielsa, claiming the Argentinian demanded numerous addendums to his contract. Lotito hit back at fans’ vitriol, saying, “Lotito doesn’t sell dreams, he sells reality.” Fans felt additional pain when Roma president James Pallotta claimed watching Lazio conducts business is “like belonging to a joke of the month club.”

In addition, following a disappointing eighth-place finish last season, the club has not officially added any players this transfer window so far, although rumors claim Ciro Immobile is on his way in on loan.

UEFA Champions League roundup: Hosts, including Manchester United, go five-for-five in playoff first legs

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Aside from a pair of away goals, the five visiting sides of Tuesday’s UEFA Champions League playoff first legs don’t have much to do beside lick their wounds and hope for something better at home.

CSKA Moscow and Club Brugge both scored on the road, but both also lost on Tuesday. And Bayer Leverkusen, Partizan Belgrade and APOEL Nicosia find themselves down 1-0 after 90 road minutes.

[ MORE: Champions League schedule ]

Here are your quick recaps:

Manchester United 3-1 Club Brugge
— RECAP | Van Gaal reacts

Memphis Depay scored twice and added a valuable stoppage time assist as the Red Devils overcame an early Michael Carrick own goal to set themselves up well for next Wednesday’s second leg in Belgium.

Lazio 1-0 Bayer Leverkusen
Keita Balde Diao scored in the 77th minute, eight minutes after Bayer had a goal controversially but correctly ruled offside.

BATE Borisov 1-0 Partizan Belgrade
The visitors went down to 10 men after a first half stoppage time red card, and Mikhail Gordeychuk reaped the rewards off a corner kick with a quarter hour to play.

Astana 1-0 APOEL Nicosia
Eleven-times capped Kazakh midfielder Bauryzhan Dzolchiev, 25, scored the lone goal of a close match in the 13th minute.

source: AP
Ruiz (AP Photo/Armando Franca)

Sporting Lisbon 2-1 CSKA Moscow
Islam Slimani’s 82nd minute goal lifts the Portuguese side into a first leg lead. Seydou Doumbia scored for the visitors. Costa Rican attacker Bryan Ruiz had an assist for the victors.

Wednesday’s UCL first legs (all at 2:45 p.m. ET)
Valencia vs. Monaco
Basel vs. Maccabi Tel-Aviv
Celtic vs. Malmo
Rapid Wien vs. Shakhtar Donetsk
Skenderbeu vs. GNK Dinamo

Serie A roundup: Napoli miss Champions League spot, Palermo stun Roma

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Week 38 of Serie A soccer has finished.

The major storyline in the the last group of matches was Rafa Benitez’s upsetting conclusion with Napoli, falling short to capture a Champions League birth before his rumored move to Real Madrid.

Napoli 2-4 Lazio: Lazio were looking good in the third-place Champions League spot prior to this match, but if Napoli were to come out victorious, a better head-to-head record would have the Little Donkeys leapfrog their opposition. In the 33rd minute, Marco Parolo made a move inside and drove a high shot that accelerated past Napoli goalkeeper Mariano Andujar. Then as half time was seconds away, Antonio Candreva, in on goal facing just Andujar, received a feed from Senad Lulic and buried the effort to give Lazio a 2-0 advantage in the first 45 minutes. Gonzalo Higuain came on fire in the second half and notched a brace, though he missed a penalty kick that could’ve drawn his squad closer. After the 80-minute mark, Ogenyi Onazi and Miroslav Klose were the final scorers to put it away.

Roma 1-2 Palermo: Even Lazio’s victory didn’t mess with AS Roma’s second-place ending, while mid-table Palermo relied on a late goal to end their season on a great note. Nicolas Spolli dampened Roma’s beginning with handball that allowed Franco Vazquez to draw first blood in the 35th minute with a PK conversion, but forward Francesco Totti applied an nicely-weighted touch to draw the game level in the 85th minute. However, Andrea Belotti made up for his missed endeavor in the 70th minute with a strong effort to bang home the game-deciding goal in the fourth minute of stoppage time. Being promoted into Italy’s top-tier for this year, Palermo’s mid-table campaign has finished well. Manager Rudi Garcia, in his second season with Roma, has guided his side to second place again.

[RELATED: Ancelotti weighing offer for AC Milan return]

Inter Milan 4-3 Empoli: Mauro Icardi counted a brace in this one to become top goal scorer in Serie A alongside 38-year-old Verona striker Luca Toni. In the 53rd minute, the ex-Sampdoria striker had himself in superb position for his first goal, from an applaudable Mateo Kovacic assist, after providing the service on Rodrigo Palacio’s 49th-minute tap-in. Marcelo Brozovic found the back of the net in 70th minute and seven minutes passed before Icardi’s placed shot beat Empoli goalie Davide Bassi. The away side halved the scoreline on Levan Mchedlidze’s first–his second goal in the 88th minute–and drew level in the 62nd minute when Manuel Pucciarelli outclassed Andrea Ranocchia to alter the momentum.

Fiorentina 3-0 Chievo: Fiorentina qualified for a Europa League spot last week and saw out  a five-game winning streak with this triumph. As Napoli was downed by Lazio, the Lillies moved into fourth place at the Artemio Franchi clashing with a 10-man Chievo due to Isaac Cofie’s second booking in the 69th minute. Josip Ilicic commenced the scoring in the 12th minute from Mohamed Salah’s cross, while Federico Bernardeschi and Milan Badelj added the other two in the second half, subsequent to the decisive red card. Bernardeschi pounced on the rebound from Mati Fernandez’s seething strike, and Badelj’s left-footer was the stoppage-time sealer. Cheivo settled their season on a four-match winless stretch.

Other results from Sunday

Cagliari 4-3 Udinese

Torino 5-0 Cesena

Sampdoria 2-2 Parma

Sassuolo 3-1 Genoa

From Saturday

Verona 2-2 Juventus

Atalanta 1-3 Milan

Juventus 2-1 Lazio: The Old Lady wins in extra time to claim Coppa Italia title

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Juventus ended a 20-year drought in the Coppa Italia, defeating Lazio 2-1 after extra time to lift the club’s second trophy of the season.

Juve has already clinched the Serie A title, and the Italian champs will have a shot at winning the treble when they take on Barcelona in the Champions League final in June.

[ MORE: A look at Europe’s domestic champions ]

The title was Juventus’ tenth Coppa Italia triumph, moving one past Roma for the most wins by a club in the tournament’s history.

Things didn’t get off to a pretty start for Max Allegri’s men, as Lazio took the lead within the opening five minutes. After Paul Pogba was whistled for a foul, Stefan Radu got his head on the ensuing free kick to give Lazio a 1-0 lead in the fourth minute.

That lead was short-lived though, as Giorgio Chiellini equalized for the Italian champs less than ten minutes later. Off of another set piece, a lofted ball from Andrea Pirlo was headed back across the box from Pogba. Chiellini was there to finish on an off-balance volley to level for Juve.

[ RELATED: Five storylines heading into Champions League final between Barcelona and Juventus ]

After two goals in the opening eleven minutes, the remaining 89 finished scoreless as extra time was needed to determine the Coppa Italia champions. It was the first Coppa Italia final to go to extra time since 2009, when Lazio defeated Sampdoria in penalties.

Early into the extra time it was the fresh legs of substitutes who determined the outcome of the match. Filip Djordjevic nearly gave Lazio the lead, but his shot hit the inside of one post and ricocheted across goal off the other post before being cleared out of the box. Just minutes later, Alessandro Matri scored for Juventus, cleaning up the rebound from a Carlos Tevez strike to lead Juve to another trophy.

LINEUPS

Juventus: Storari, Barzagli, Bonucci, Chiellini, Evra, Lichsteiner (Padoin, 115′), Vidal, Pirlo, Pogba (Pereyra, 78′), Llorente (Matri, 84′), Tevez

Goals: Chiellini (11′), Matri (97′)

Lazio: Berisha, de Vrij (Keita, 105′), Gentiletti, Radu (Mauricio, 71′), Basta, Parolo, Cataldi, Lulic, Candreva, Klose (Djordjevic, 83′), Pereira Gomes

Goal: Radu (4′)