MUNICH – Lazio understands that they are not yet a team at international level. “To become one, we would have to play in the Champions League every year,” notes Cataldi, but the Biancocelesti, after becoming the first Italian team to emerge from it, risk not being in Europe next year either: the Champions Cup has Energy sucked and resources taken away from mastery so that in the end what was achieved was achieved Sarri he had been predicting since this summer that his squad was inadequate, both numerically and technically, to compete in four top-level competitions (Lazio are also in the semi-finals of the Italian Cup and have taken part in the Supercup). .

Bayern-Lazio testimonials: Müller everywhere, Immobile unforgivable

Sarri’s assessment: “Good in the Champions League, not quite at the level of the league”

So what now? How can one start again from the lesson of Munich, from the illusion that was extinguished at the end of the first half, after playing a game and a half at the level of one of the strongest teams in the world and reaching the quarter-finals of the Champions League? De Ligt confirmed, had he set it as a minimum target? “It’s very simple,” says Sarri. “We have to get promoted back in the championship quickly, we definitely should have given a lot more. However, in the Champions League we did what our potential allowed us to do. Since there were more wins than defeats, the balance is positive. My regret is about the first leg against Bayern: we could have finished with a bigger lead. Here, however, the technical gap was clearly visible and the second goal blew us away.”

Italian Cup, the decisive game against Juventus to save the season

Now it’s about putting things back in order and maybe focusing on the season Italian Cup semi-finals in Aprilagainst Juventus (and Sarri is already stretching his hands forward: “Absurd calendar: within a week we will also face Juve in the championship and we will have the derby”), the double challenge that, given the way Europe, can ultimately save the season is far away today.

The Lazio players greet the fans after the game against Bayern

The Lazio players greet the fans after the game against Bayern

Sarri’s future: “Contracts run as long as they…”

But then? What does Lazio’s future look like in the medium term? Is there still room for Sarri? Does it matter that the coach has often had a dull smile and a tired look lately? Is he still having fun, admitting that at Lazio he rediscovered the emotions of pure football that Chelsea and Juventus, where he also collected titles, had taken away from him? Will defeat in Monaco change Sarri’s future? Stay, okay? “This is a consideration that must be made together with the company. My contract runs for another year, even if the contracts in football last as long as you can find them,” is the coach’s interim answer.

Once the peak is reached, the cycle is over

In this suspended uncertainty, however, all his doubts are embedded and perhaps even mutual, considering that I Relations with Lotito they have long since cooled down. By achieving the highest point in its recent international history (and second place last year, its best result in the league since the 2000 Scudetto), Sarri’s Lazio could also have closed a cycle, and Sarri has closed his with Lazio. “We are not a young team, so this cycle may come to an end at the end of the season. “We certainly have to start something again this summer,” i.e. rejuvenate the squad and perhaps also renew the technical management.

Lotito likes Palladino

be Sarri Signs of fatigue has passed this on and the company is also thinking about alternatives Palladino, which Lotito really likes and who embodies the demands of the novelty: he is young and plays a different type of football than Sarri (if you want to restart a cycle, you have to do it with different technical ideas: that is the basis). A detailed and concrete justification is postponed until after the semi-finals of the Italian Cup (April 2 and 23), but what matters is that Sarri has already expressed doubts that “contracts last as long as they last”. He has repeatedly reiterated that he intends to end his high-profile career at Lazio as he does not feel suitable to coach a national team and is perhaps thinking of one last adventure abroad, perhaps in the Middle East, but more for the money than of fame. Because after Unlike almost all of his colleagues, Sarri began to really earn less than a decade ago. The smile has certainly become dull and the look has become blurred for several months.