Lazio rallies to defeat struggling AC Milan


Lazio came from behind to pick up a deserved three points against a faltering AC Milan side, winning 3-1 at the Stadio Olimpico. Jeremy Menez gave the Rossoneri an early lead, but it was only illusionary as Lazio dominated from start to finish. Two goals in four minutes after halftime from Marco Parolo and Miroslav Klose turned the game around before Parolo added a third to lift Stefano Pioli's men up to third in the standings on Saturday night. These two teams will renew their rivalry once again on Tuesday night when they meet in the quarter-final of the Coppa Italia at the San Siro, a fixture which could well prove decisive for the future of Milan coach Filippo Inzaghi, who also lost Philippe Mexes to a late red card. After Lazio had an early claim for a penalty waved away, they shot themselves in the foot after only four minutes to let Milan take the lead. Menez stole the ball from Dusan Basta near the centre spot and raced unchallenged into the penalty area before sweeping his shot past Federico Marchetti. It proved, however, to be Milan's only moment of danger in the entire game with the hosts soon showing who was boss. Klose and Candreva had a few chances each before another penalty appeal was waved away near the end of the first half when Mexes appeared to get too physical with Stefano Mauri, but any fears it was not going to be Lazio's night were dispelled early in the second half. Klose crossed for Parolo to volley Lazio level in the 47th minute before the World Cup winner put the Biancocelesti in front. The 36-year-old used all of his experience to sniff out the chance when Riccardo Montolivo was hounded out by Lazio players and could only go backwards. Milan's captain misplaced his pass right into the path of the German, who tucked his shot inside Diego Lopez's near post. Lazio underlined their supremacy with a third goal 10 minutes from time with another counter-attack led this time by Candreva, who intelligently pulled the ball across goal to the unmarked Filip Djordjevic. He slipped on the ball — and had to be substituted immediately after — but Parolo picked up the loose ball to make it three. Mexes made matters worse for himself and Milan in stoppage time when, after provoking Mauri, he succeeded only in provoking himself into putting his hand around the Lazio captain's neck off the ball, earning a red card. Inzaghi, who had only the Belgian and Alex to choose from in the centre of his defence, will have to think of something else for Milan's next league game against Parma — if he is still in charge for that game.