Lazio completed their nightmare week with a 4-1 Europa League defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt, as Dusan Basta and Joaquin Correa were sent off.
Simone Inzaghi kept squad rotation for a minimum for this most difficult fixture in their Europa League group, as their run of five consecutive victories was ended at the weekend by arch rivals Roma. The Germans had Jetro Willems suspended, David Abraham and Carlos Salcedo injured for the German Cup winners.
It was immediately an aggressive start from the hosts in a fiery atmosphere and they broke through within three minutes. A Jonathan De Guzman corner sailed over the head of Sergej Milinkovic-Savic and found Danny Da Costa for an acrobatic volley under the bar from close range.
Lazio reacted well and passed the ball around for long periods, Immobile’s snapshot fingertipped round the post by former PSG goalkeeper Kevin Trapp.
However, they lost Riza Durmisi when he fell very awkwardly and seemed to dislocate his elbow, making way for Senad Lulic.
Nonetheless, Lazio made their strong response count and equalised with a classic counter. Eintracht felt Lucas Leiva handled when winning back the ball, but Joaquin Correa rolled across from the left for on-rushing Marco Parolo to fire in.
Eintracht pounced on a series of defensive errors to restore their advantage, as Lucas Leiva and Wallace both mistimed tackles until the Mijat Gacinovic full-back found unmarked Filip Kostic to blast home from 12 yards.
It remained an even match, but Dusan Basta received two foolish yellow cards, the second for hauling back a player on the counter, and was sent off on the stroke of half-time.
After the restart, Correa ballooned over after Immobile had let a pass through, realising he was offside, while Luka Jovic’s angled drive flashed wide.
Lazio tried to pour forward, leaving themselves hopelessly exposed on the counter and Sebastian Haller flicked it away from Francesco Acerbi, rolling across for Jovic’s delightful lob over Silvio Proto.
It got even worse for the Biancocelesti, as Correa was shown a straight red card for his lunge from behind on De Guzman, reducing them to nine men for the final half-hour.
Valon Berisha made his Lazio debut after injury problems, but there was still time for a fourth with the last kick of the game, as Da Costa completed his brace when left totally unmarked for a cushioned volley at the far post.
This result leaves the team in a precarious position. The only good news is that Olympique Marseille threw away a 2-0 lead over Apollon Limassol to draw 2-2 after losing the opener to Eintracht.
The next two games are head-to-head clashes with Rudi Garcia’s Marseille, with Basta and Correa suspended for at least one of them.