Klose relaunches Lazio, Fiorentina up to fourth
A brace from Miroslav Klose in a 2-0 win over Livorno helped relaunch Lazio's stuttering season as Fiorentina moved up to fourth in Serie A with a comprehensive 3-0 win at home to Bologna on Sunday.
Italian Cup champions Lazio had won only four times this season, their last victory, a 2-0 defeat of Cagliari at the end of October, heaping the pressure on coach Vladimir Petkovic.
Petkovic on Saturday had admitted that this could be his last game in charge of the Biancocelesti in the event of defeat against league new boys Livorno.
However the 50-year-old Bosnian's nerves were settled before the half-hour of a one-sided affair with German veteran striker Klose hitting the net twice in the space of seven minutes.
German international Klose, who made his return to the fray in the Europa League in midweek following a shoulder injury, hit the target at the second time of asking on 19 minutes after Bardi had run out and initially got a hand to his effort.
Klose grabbed his second seven minutes later when he picked up the rebound from a Hernanes shot on the edge of the area and was given time to stride in unchallenged to drill past Bardi.
Lazio's fifth win of the campaign moved them up to provisional ninth place, albeit 20 points adrift of leaders Juventus ahead of the Old Lady's later match at home to Sassuolo.
Fiorentina, meanwhile, capitalised on Bologna's poor form of late to move up to fourth at the expense of Inter, who travel to Napoli in Sunday's late game.
Fiorentina had won their home fixture against Bologna in the past two seasons and raced to a 13th minute lead when Josep Ilicic silenced the critics of his recent goal drought with a fine individual effort.
The Slovenian had not scored since April but after collecting the ball in midfield he dribbled his way through the Bologna defence before leaving 'keeper Gianluca Curci rooted to the spot..
Before claiming his 13th goal of the season, Rossi first turned provider.
Sighting Borja Valero running through unmarked, Rossi delivered a perfect square ball allowing the Spaniard a clear run on goal to beat Curci with a curling shot inside the keeper's far post.
Bologna had little in response and Fiorentina virtually sealed the points in the 64th minute when Rossi added a third.
This time, Valero returned the favour with a chipped pass into the path of the Italy striker, who coolly lobbed the advancing 'keeper from the edge of the area to take his his league-leading tally to 13 in 16 games.
Fiorentina almost grabbed their fourth when Juan Vargas ran through on goal but the Peruvian's effort was blocked by Cesare Natali.
Elsewhere Udinese dropped several places down the table, to 15th, after being stunned 2-0 at home with the goals coming from Alexander Farnerud and Ciro Immobile.
Sampdoria secured a precious fourth win of the campaign, the second in succession under new coach Sinisa Mihajlovic, with a 1-0 win away to Chievo which moved the Genoese side up to 14th.
Parma and Cagliari played out a scoreless draw while Genoa, who scored a 72nd minute opener through Andrea Bertolacci, were stunned in the fourth minute of injury time by a Giuseppe De Luca leveller.
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