Zenit St Petersburg coach Sergey Semak knew what to expect from Lazio’s deadly double act ahead of Tuesday’s Champions League meeting in Rome.
Knowing about it and stopping it are, however, two completely different things.
And, with Zenit’s European adventure all but over following a third defeat in four matches, Semak could do nothing put pay tribute to two players who ripped his defence apart during a 3-1 victory for Simone Inzaghi’s Serie A giants.
“Luis Alberto and Immobile? They are two exceptional players and they proved it on the pitch,” Semak told LazioNews24.
The ever reliable Immobile took his tally to seven goals in eight games on the night, slamming home a trademark second-half penalty after a glorious first-half opener, pinged into the top corner from the edge of the box.
But while Immobile did what Immobile does better than almost anyone in Europe right now, Inzaghi would have been thrilled to see Alberto perform with such an assured swagger as speculation continues to swirl over his future.
Citta Celeste reports Lazio president Claudio Lotito is desperate to sell his Spanish schemer after a public falling out between player and club.
Everton, Juventus and Inter Milan are keeping tabs on the £73 million-rated former Liverpool youngster but, with Inzaghi hoping to repeat the successes of last season, he’ll be desperate to keep Alberto.
On his day, the former Sevilla starlet is one of the most creative footballers in Europe. Yesterday was one of those days, with only Joaquin Correa bettering Alberto’s number of key passes during a result that almost ensures Lazio’s place in the Champions League knock-out stages.
The question is, will the Everton target still be there when the second round commences in the new year?