Last-gasp Marusic heads Lazio to win over troubled Juventus

AFP , Saturday 30 Mar 2024

Adam Marusic fired Lazio to late victory over Juventus with his stoppage-time header in Saturday's 1-0 win in Rome, as a 3-0 home humbling at the hands of Atalanta left Napoli's Champions League hopes hanging by a thread.

Adam Marusic
Lazio s Montenegrin defender #77 Adam Marusic fights for the ball with Juventus Italian defender #02 Mattia De Sciglio during the Italian Serie A football match between Lazio and Juventus at the Olympic stadium in Rome, on March 30, 2024. AFP

 

Marusic thumped home Matteo Guendouzi's perfect inswinging cross in the third minute of added time at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome to ensure victory in Igor Tudor's first match as Lazio coach.

The Montenegro defender's first goal of the season pushed Lazio up to seventh, a point above Napoli and eight away from the last Champions League spot currently held by Bologna.

Juve, in third, are stuck firmly in a rut after defeat in the Italian capital left them four matches without a win and sliding back towards a battle for a Champions League spot.

Massimiliano Allegri's side have picked up just seven points from their last nine matches and Saturday's performance was another in a growing list of underwhelming outings.

Juve were without suspended Dusan Vlahovic and fellow attackers Arkadiusz Milik and Filip Kostic, and lacked inspiration throughout a scrappy contest in Rome.

Lazio made life tough for Juve in Tudor's debut in the dugout after taking over from Maurizio Sarri as permanent boss at the Roman outfit.

And he pumped his fists on the touchline when Marusic decided the contest to give him the perfect start to life at Lazio.

Tudor, who won Serie A and B titles over nine years as a Juventus player, will be encouraged by the solid display put on by his team.

The former Croatia defender has a tough opening week at Lazio as his side face Juve again on Tuesday, in Turin for the first leg of their Italian Cup semi-final, before the Rome derby next weekend.

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