ROME – Lazio edged Fiorentina 1-0 on Tuesday to become the first team to qualify for the semifinals of the Coppa Italia.
Playing in front of 30,000 people at Rome’s Olympic stadium, the hosts took an early lead thanks to Senad Lulic’s goal in the 6th minute.
The Bosnian international eluded Fiorentina defender Bruno Gaspar in the box before tucking the ball inside the far post.
Despite losing Felipe Caicedo to injury in the 26th minute, Lazio remained firmly in control and came close to doubling its lead right before half-time.
Fiorentina, led by sub Giovanni Simeone, was better in the second half. Its best chance came in the 65th minute, when Italian U-21 standout Federico Chiesa loosed a curving shot from the edge of the box, forcing a decisive stop from Lazio goalkeeper Thomas Strakosha.
Still smarting from conceding the equalizer on a penalty in the final minute of their recent Serie A match with Fiorentino, Lazio defended tenaciously to see out the win.
Lazio’s opponent in the two-leg Coppa Italia semifinal will be the winner of Wednesday’s Milan derby.
The other two quarterfinals are set for next week, when Napoli will face Atalanta and Juventus squares off against Torino.