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Rediff.com  » Sports » Football Roundup: Fazio goes from villain to hero as Roma win derby

Football Roundup: Fazio goes from villain to hero as Roma win derby

Last updated on: September 29, 2018 19:16 IST

Roma

IMAGE: AS Roma's Federico Fazio celebrates scoring their third goal with Bryan Cristante. Photograph: Tony Gentile/Reuters

Roma defender Federico Fazio went from villain to hero as his side continued their recent dominance over neighbours Lazio with a 3-1 win in a pulsating Derby della Capitale on Saturday.

Fazio made an awful mistake to gift Lazio an equaliser midway through the second half but, after Aleksandar Kolarov put Roma back in front with a free kick against his old club, made amends by heading their third goal.

 

It was Roma's seventh win in their last nine meetings with Lazio in all competitions and pulled them up to fifth place in Serie A with 11 points, one place and one point behind their opponents.

Lazio, winners of their last five matches in all competitions, dominated the early exchanges but Roma struck the first blow in the 45th minute.

A long ball was launched into the area, Lazio defender Luiz Felipe and goalkeeper Thomas Strakosha collided and the ball ran loose to Lorenzo Pellegrini who cleverly backheeled it into the goal.

Pellegrini, who became the tenth different Roma player to score in Serie A this season, had been on the pitch for only nine minutes after replacing the injured Javier Pastore.

It was all going smoothly for Roma until Fazio was dispossessed as he tried to dribble around Ciro Immobile and the Lazio forward ran on to fire the ball wide of Patrick Olsen for his first goal in a Rome derby.

But Roma were back in front within four minutes. Lazio substitute Milan Badejl tripped Pellegrini from behind on the edge of the area and Kolarov fired the free kick through a huge hole in the Lazio wall.

Argentina defender Fazio completed the win, and atoned for his earlier mistake, by meeting a free kick with a towering header to score four minutes from time.

Hertha stun Bayern for first win in nine years

Bayern Munich

IMAGE: Hertha Berlin players celebrate after the match. Photograph: Hannibal Hanschke/Reuters

Hertha Berlin stunned leaders Bayern Munich 2-0 on Friday for their first win over them in nine years that snapped the champions' unbeaten run this season and moved the Berliners joint top in the Bundesliga.

Hertha captain Vedad Ibisevic sent Manuel Neuer the wrong way to score with a 23rd minute penalty after Jerome Boateng had brought down Salomon Kalou.

Slovak forward Ondrej Duda continued his sensational form with his fifth goal of the season, firing in on the stroke of halftime to confirm Hertha's fine start that has left them in second place on 13 points, level on points with Bayern.

The champions, with injured Leon Goretzka joining a growing list of absentees that already includes Kingsley Coman and Corentin Tolisso among others, had their share of chances as they dominated after the break.

With 65 percent possession, 14 corners compared to Hertha's one and 24-6 shots on goal, Bayern will be asking themselves how they failed to get at least a point from the game.

"Our conversion rate is one reason but we also let in two goals," said Bayern coach Niko Kovac. "Both could have been avoided."

"We still played a decent game. We have no problem with the defeat and will not start seeing everything in a negative light. Everyone who knows this club knows we will bounce back and we will be successful again."

James Rodriguez came close for the visitors in the second half but even the introduction of a third striker with Sandro Wagner in the 72nd minute could not prevent their first defeat of the season, three days after stumbling to a 1-1 draw against Augsburg.

Borussia Dortmund, third on 11 points, are in action against Bayer Leverkusen on Saturday, while Schalke 04, last season's runners-up who have lost all five league games so far, host Mainz 05.

Turkey cries foul after fourth failure to host Euro soccer

Turkish newspapers slammed UEFA's choice of Germany to host the Euro 2024 soccer tournament, saying the country's fourth failed bid was a stab in the back by Europe's soccer bosses.

UEFA's executive committee voted 12-4 in favour of Germany hosting the competition on Thursday, hours after President Tayyip Erdogan arrived in Berlin on a visit aimed at improving strained ties. Turkey was the only other bidder.

At a news conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday, Erdogan left a question about the decision unanswered, but his Youth and Sports Minister Mehmet Kasapoglu said that the decision was "saddening for UEFA and the Euro 2024".

Turkey's newspapers were not as diplomatic, accusing UEFA of siding with racism in reference to Germany midfielder Mesut Ozil's resignation from the national team. Ozil said he had faced racism over his Turkish background - a charge denied by the football association.

"It's not fair, UEFA supported racism," said pro-government newspaper Yeni Safak.

Several newspapers also accused UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin of swaying the vote in favour of Germany. "We were shot in the back," said another pro-government newspaper, Vatan.

It said Yildirim Demiroren, an ally of Erdogan who is also the chairman of Turkey's Football Federation (TFF) and the Demiroren media group, lashed out at Ceferin after the decision.

"(He) stabbed us in the back," said Milliyet, owned by Demiroren's group. "The number one actor responsible for us losing at the table is Ceferin," it said.

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