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Immobile equals Serie A scoring record in Lazio win

Ciro Immobile became the first player in 61 years to reach 27 Serie A goals after 25 matches as Lazio moved back within one point of leaders Juventus.

The Italy striker, 30, doubled Lazio’s lead after Adam Marusic’s opener at relegation-threatened Genoa. Francesco Cassata replied but Danilo Cataldi made it 3-1 before Domenico Criscito scored a late penalty.

Antonio Angelillo was the last man to make such a prolific start to a Serie A season, with Inter Milan in 1958-59. The Argentine striker ended that season with 33 goals in 33 games.

But the record for most goals in a Serie A campaign is held by current Juve striker Gonzalo Higuain, who scored 36 in 35 games for Napoli in 2015-16.

Who is Ciro Immobile? And can he break the Serie A record?
Higuain set the record in style. Going into the final game of the season, he was two goals behind Gunnar Nordahl’s mark of 35 in 37 for AC Milan, which had stood since 1949-50.

The Argentine striker, who ended last season on loan with Chelsea, then hit a 19-minute hat-trick in the second half of Napoli’s 4-0 win over already-relegated Frosinone.

Immobile had finished the 2015-16 season with five goals on loan from Sevilla to Torino, for whom the former Juve youngster scored 22 goals in 2013-14.

That loan spell paved the way for a permanent return to Italy with Lazio, which kick-started Immobile’s career at the age of 26 after underwhelming spells with Borussia Dortmund and Sevilla.

He scored 26 goals in 2016-17 and followed that up with 41 in all competitions in 2017-18, and despite a dip last term, Sunday’s goal at Genoa took him to 116 goals in 166 games for Lazio.

His form has raised hopes of the Rome-based club stopping Juve claiming a ninth straight Scudetto and winning their first title since 2000.

Lazio have 13 games left, with Immobile nine goals behind Higuain, and he has the added motivation of trying to cement a spot in Italy’s starting line-up for Euro 2020, having been in and out of their starting XI during the qualifiers.