Maurizio Sarri was happy to be able to help his former club Napoli as his Lazio side beat Milan 4-0 on Tuesday to once again support the Serie A leaders in their title fight.
Sarri was born in Naples and ran the Partenopei from 2015 to 2018 and looks set to end his longing for 33 years of Scudetto success under Luciano Spalletti.
Napoli’s top lead was 12 points leading up to Milan’s game against Lazio at the Stadio Olimpico, which remained the case after an extreme showdown by the hosts.
Sergej Milinkovic-Savic and Mattia Zaccagni circulated Sarri’s men at the timeout, and Milan’s attempt to narrow the gap to a Serie A peak to nine points was sadly unsatisfactory, while Luis Alberto and Felipe Anderson added goals in the second half.
Noting that while he wanted to focus on his team’s performance, he also enjoyed helping his former club, he told DAZN: “We basically gave ourselves a gift. We cared a lot about the standings and to show how much we’ve grown.
If Napoli are in a good place in the standings, that’s nothing but a reason for satisfaction for me.”
The shimmering spectacle against Milan was Lazio’s second consecutive league win, pushing them from sixth place to third, just one point behind the reigning champions.
On top of their impressive offensive performances, Sarri’s men have not conceded 11 goals in 19 Serie A games so far this campaign, equaling the club’s record for best no-goal at this point in the season.
Former Chelsea boss Sarri was pleased with his team’s performance and said it could be the best game they’ve played under him since he came to the club in 2021.
“He was one of the best today in terms of technical and tactical enjoyment,” said Sarri. “Maybe for the best.
“This group has always been a perfect fit for me, and on paper we can be successful if we can eliminate the defect of not scoring away points against lower teams.”
The win put Lazio above their top four rivals Inter and Roma on goal difference after their Champions League qualifying bids had already taken a big hand on Saturday with a 15-point cut from Juventus allegedly miscalculating.
“At the final whistle, I thought we were going to play a very difficult game with Fiorentina in a few days,” said Sarri, hoping his team could maintain the momentum against Fiorentina on Sunday and continue their offensive into the top four.
“We should not think long-term, we should keep the adrenaline going in the next games. Unfortunately, sometimes it was our fault.
“We are doing the best we can, we will summarize at the end of the season. There are better equipped teams for me.” [to finish top four]but we still get one game at a time and see what comes out of it.”