Lazio lost for the first time in Serie A this calendar year as Bologna won 2-0 with relative ease at the Stadio Renato Dall’Ara on Saturday evening and dented the Biancocelesti’s Champions League qualification hopes.
After Simone Inzaghi’s side capitulated to Bayern Munich midweek, goals from Ibrahima Mbaye and Nicola Sansone secured the win for the Felsinei, and a Ciro Immobile penalty miss contributed to a terrible end of a miserable week for the capital club.
After a curling Sergej Milinkovic-Savic freekick had Lukasz Skorupski scrambling across his goalline early on, Lazio should have taken the lead on 17 minutes when the trickery of Joaquin Correa handed the visitors a penalty.
However, moments after striker Ciro Immobile had sent a tame effort straight at a diving Skorupski, it was full-back Mbaye who found himself giving the Felsinei the lead from close range after Pepe Reina had palmed a Riccardo Orsolini shot into his path.
Bologna could have pulled even further ahead, but Reina made an impressive save from Musa Barrow, and shortly afterwards Roberto Soriano looked to have a free run at goal, but his own hesitancy allowed the Lazio defence to recover.
Although the Biancocelesti continued to control possession in Emilia-Romagna, a determined Rossoblu appeared intent on defeating the Romans for the first time since 2012 and were barely troubled before the break.
In the second half, Lazio were much more active in the hosts’ penalty box, as Sinisa Mihajlovic’s men appeared to retreat ever deeper towards their own goal, but the Biancocelesti’s chances seemed to fade away just as they looked set to test Skorupski.
With their shortcomings in front of goal on the night clear for all to see, it was somewhat predictable that Bologna’s first notable chance of the half, saw Sansone powerfully volley home a Barrow cross past Reina on 65 minutes.
When the Aquile finally tested Skorupski again on 88 minutes, it was Soriano slicing a corner kick towards his own net, which saw the Polish goalkeeper make a miraculous reaction save on the line.
Lazio will now hope that they can secure three points at relegation-threatened Torino on Tuesday night, before heading to Turin to face Toro’s neighbours Juventus next weekend.