Football: Serie A - Lazio v Roma
Sunday November 11
The Italian capital has been home to intense rivalries and cross-city fireworks ever since Romulus killed his brother Remus and named the city after himself.
The Stadio Olimpico is no exception, and this year’s Derby della Capitale is given extra spark by Lazio and Roma’s proximity in the Serie A table.
For the past few years they’ve been separated – Roma have largely occupied the European places, while the Biancazzurro have languished in mid-table. But 11 games in to the current season and Lazio are fifth, two points ahead of their rivals, thanks in no small part to six goals in 10 games from Miroslav Klose.
However, their confidence will have been shaken by a shock 4-0 defeat to Catania last weekend – for which Klose was suspended – and Roma manager Zdenek Zeman will relish the chance to leapfrog his former team, having managed Lazio from 1994 to 1997. His own Mr Dependable, Francesco Totti, is still pulling the strings at the age of 36: he’s scored four and set up three in 10 games this season.
Juventus’ first league defeat for 50 games last week may have opened the door at the top a crack. If either Roman club is going to prise it open further, a derby-day win is required.