Lazio suffered a shock 2-1 defeat in a chaotic game at Lecce, with a missed penalty, repeated VAR calls and Patric sent off for biting an opponent.
After their 3-0 loss in Milan, the Aquile had dropped seven points behind Juventus leaders, but Ciro Immobile and Felipe Caicedo returned from suspension with Joaquin Correa injured and Sergej Milinkovic-Savic fit only to the bench. The Salentini had lost six on the bounce, with Panagiotis Tachtsidis, Gianluca Lapadula, Luca Rossettini, and Biagio Meccariello suspended from play.
This was a special game for the two coaches because for several years Fabio Liverani and Simone Inzaghi were teammates at Lazio.
It was a chaotic start to the game because within two minutes Marco Mancosu had smashed a scorcher from 20 meters into the near-top corner. Lecce celebrations were however short-lived because it was disallowed in the build-up after a VAR on-field review due to Mancosu’s handball.
The match had just resumed, Lazio then went up in front. Gabriel stumbled under Immobile ‘s pressure, was able to parry Marco Parolo’s first attempt but not Caicedo’s follow-up into an empty net. On the half-hour, Lecce got their equalizer when Pippo Falco raced past Francesco Acerbi to the right and floated a perfect cross for Khouma Babacar, who had been given a free header from eight yards.
Nonetheless, Lecce came out fighting as the scorcher of Mancosu was deflected over and Fabio Lucioni had a header in the ground in front of Francesco Acerbi to rebound from nine yards past Strakosha at the resulting corner.
The stress came upon Patric who was sent off after being caught on VAR biting Giulio Donation the arm during the injury time.