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Zaccagni sinks Bologna to put Lazio near Champions League spots


Rome (AFP) – Mattia Zaccagni struck a second-half brace as Lazio strolled past Bologna 3-0 to close in on Serie A’s Champions League places.

Zaccagni doubled Lazio’s lead in the 53rd minute when he collected Luis Alberto’s through ball and slotted past Lukasz Skorupski, tapping home the third 10 minutes later from Manuel Lazzari’s low cross.

Maurizio Sarri’s side, in sixth, are three points behind Juventus, who hold the final Champions League spot and travel to fifth-placed Atalanta on Sunday night.

Ciro Immobile had opened the scoring from the penalty spot for a dominant Lazio side with 12 minutes on the clock, the 19th goal of the season for Serie A’s leading scorer.

Bologna went closest to scoring seconds after the break when Marko Arnautovic’s neat close-range flick was well kept out by Thomas Strakosha, but that was as good as it got for Sinisa Mihajlovic’s side, who sit 13th on 28 points.

The clean sheet was Lazio’s fourth in as many Serie A games, a serious defensive improvement for a team which had been the most porous in the league’s upper reaches.

Napoli will have the chance to move top of Serie A later on Saturday when they host champions and current league leaders Inter Milan in one of the biggest matches of the season.

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