Date: 26th January 2013 at 8:07pm
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Lazio lost 1-0 against a stubborn Chievo side at the Stadio Olimpico in Saturday’s tea time kick-off.  Alberto Paloschi’s close range effort settled a game in which the home side dominated possession but couldn’t find a way through a well organised Gialloblu defence.

Lazio went into the game knowing that a win would put them just two points behind leaders Juventus.  They would be without the injured Mirolsav Klose however and Stefano Mauri and Hernanes only made the bench.

A win for the away side, who hadn’t lost against the hosts at the Stadio Olimpico since 2003, would take them above Torino in 11th.

After an opening ten minutes, which Lazio largely controlled, it was Chievo who actually nearly opened the scoring.  Alberto Paloschi nearly caught out Federico Marchetti from almost the half way line with an ambitious volley.  Fortunately for Marchetti the ball sailed just over his crossbar.

The home side didn’t test Christian Puggioni in the Chievo goal until the 23rd minute.  A fierce strike by Abdoulay Konko was parried wide and Chievo defended the resulting corner kick well.

The best effort either side could muster before half-time was a tamely struck volley by Antonio Candreva which was easily saved by Puggioni.  The first half was largely characterised by deep defending from Chievo and a lack of quality in the final third from the home team.

In the 48th minute Vladimir Petkovic’s men carved out a better chance than in the entire first half as Cristian Ledesma’s chipped pass released Candreva down the right flank, unfortunately his cross was just too close to Puggioni as Sergio Floccari was ready to pounce.

Just two minutes later Floccari connected perfectly with a left-footed volley but his strike went straight into the mid-drift of Puggioni.

The Bianocelesti began the second period with much more intent and Mauri was introduced after ten minutes.  Just moments later he could have broke the deadlock.  He ghosted into the box and met a pin point crss from the right but his header sailed harmlessly wide.

In the 61st minute Chievo made the home side pay for their wastefulness.  Cyril Thereau looked to have run into a dead-end but his cut back found Bojan Jokic.  His first time shot hit the underside of the cross-bar and Paloschi forced home the rebound to make it 1-0 against the run of play.

In the 77th minute Mauri had another glorious opportunity to get his side back into the game but he blazed over the cross bar with just the keeper to beat from inside the area.

Lazio continued to pile on the pressure and Hernanes was next to try his luck, but like those before him, he wasn’t able to test Puggioni and his effort swerved well wide as Chievo’s five man defence continued to restrict Lazio to hopeful pot shots at goal.

That would be the last action of the game as Lazio’s impressive unbeaten run came to an end landing a hammer blow to their title hopes.

Follow Michael Clarkosn on Twitter: @M_Clarkson