On Saturday night at the Olimpico, Napoli conceded a late-game equaliser to AS Roma, giving both clubs a share of the spoils. That temporarily moves Napoli into third place, but that's a precarious position for the partenopei. Their hopes of Champions League 2012-2013 now hinge not just on the final three matches, but on a late-season showdown between Udinese and Lazio, taking place Sunday night at the Stadio Friuli. Should Lazio win, they'll move three points clear, but if Udi conquer, they'll share third with Napoli. A draw gives Lazio just a one-point cushion. Plus, both sides will be looking to see if already-relegated Cesena can make miracles happen against Inter Milan. If not, Inter will also be level on points with Napoli.
Head spinning yet? Well, let's get on to the specifics of this major match. Lazio might be three points ahead of Udinese, but they're struggling mightily. The biancocelesti have hit a downward skid, losing to relegation-dwelling Novara and drawing with 18th-placed Lecce. A surfeit of injuries have contributed to the madness, with Lazio losing Miroslav Klose, Hernanes, Cristian Brocchi, and more. From where will the pressure, and the goals, come?
Udinese, meanwhile, are dealing with injuries to Mauricio Isla and Andrea Coda, while Francesco Guidolin's favorite substitute, Antonio Floro Flores, is suspended. Since falling out of the Europa League in mid-March, the zebrette have one just one match, at home to Parma, from seven played. Really, it kind of makes you wonder if either of these teams can be bothered with something as mainstream as, you know, winning.