Empoli vs Lazio

November 8, 2014
By: Nemanja Lazarevic

Empoli sit dangerously close to the relegation zone after losing three successive league matches, and in-form Lazio are hardly the perfect opponents to be facing at this point in time. The Biancocelesti have stabilised their form of late and they will be eager to cement a top 3 position by winning at Stadio Carlo Castellani.

Three defeats in a row

While Empoli did well to return to Italian Serie A, the club seem to have failed to properly reinforce the squad ahead of the new season. As a result, the current side predominantly consist of players with little top flight experience or the ones well past their prime, so one shouldn’t be surprised if the Azzurri go straight back to Serie B. Once the excitement surrounding the promotion has subsided, Empoli suffered a serious dip in form, with heavy defeats to Cagliari, Sassuolo and Juventus enough to suggest Maurizio Sarri’s charges are completely out of confidence at the moment. Veteran strikers Massimo Maccarone and Francesco Tavano have largely struggled up front, while the inexperienced back line has been leaking goals for fun. Everything considered, this is definitely not the right time to be facing Lazio, a team that appear on top of their game at the moment. Given that they couldn’t match bottom-table sides Cagliari and Sassuolo, the Azzurri cannot be trusted to fare any better against genuine top 3 contenders.

Tiberio Guarente and Lorenzo Tonelli are out through injury and suspension respectively, whilst Simone Verdi faces a fitness test.

Lazio hit the ground running

For the first time in quite a while, Lazio have seriously reinforced the squad during off season, not only signing quality players to slot straight into the starting line-up, but also ensuring there is sufficient strength in depth. And while the Biancocelesti obviously needed a while to get going, they seem to be back to their best, with five wins in last six games seeing the team climb to third in the league standings. The fact Lazio won three of those matches with at least two goals to spare is enough to suggest Stefano Pioli’s are playing at a very high level rather than grinding out the results. Summer recruit Filip Djordjevic and veteran striker Miroslav Klose has both been in fine form, while injuries to full-backs Stefan Radu and Dusan Basta didn’t prove to be too big of an issue thanks to good performances from Luis Cavanda and Edson Braafheid. Having defeated Palermo and Fiorentina on the road, while coming close to beating Hellas Verona as well, Lazio seem to have what it takes to win at Empoli.

Luis Cavanda returns from suspension, but Dusan Basta, Balde Keita and Santiago Gentiletti are out injured, while Stefan Radu is doubtful.


Empoli are very low on confidence following the latest poor run and given that they also lack quality to match a side like Lazio, this is a real no-brainer. The Biancocelesti have been playing at a very high level of late and they can be trusted to win at Stadio Carlo Castellani.

Top pick: Away win   2.25 (5/4) @ Coral

Alternative pick 1: Lazio to win to nil   3.75 (11/4) @ BetVictor

Alternative pick 2: Klose to score   2.75 (7/4) @ Ladbrokes

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