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Rome Derby Ends in Frustration for Both Teams

Roma and Lazio battled to a 1-1 draw in the derby of the Eternal City at the Stadio Olimpico on Monday night, a result that did neither team any favors as both continue to chase a UEFA Champions League berth for next season. Lazio is now fifth in the Serie A standings, seven points behind third-place AC Milan in the final Champions League spot. The draw left Roma in seventh, three points behind its bitter city rival.

Lazio started the stronger of the two sides, with Hernanes giving the Biancocelesti the lead in the 16th minute with a stunning 25-yard volley, but the Brazil international later missed a penalty before giving a penalty away, which Roma captain Francesco Totti duly converted in the 56th minute. With 20 minutes left in the game, Lazio defender Giuseppe Biava was sent off for a second yellow card, but Roma failed to take advantage of the extra man. (American Michael Bradley played the full 90 for Roma.)

“We threw it away in the first half,” Totti told Sky Italia. “Unfortunately we did not get into the game immediately and they put us under great difficulty. Hernanes' [penalty] miss has changed the game and we did better after that.”

Despite only claiming a point, Lazio coach Vladimir Petkovic said: “I see the glass as half full. I believe that the Champions League is still possible.”

The Rome derby has a history of fan violence and Monday night’s game was no exception. According to La Gazzetta dello Sport, at least eight fans were wounded prior to kickoff.

Read the whole story at Associated Press »

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