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Lazio held after debatable penalty and two red cards

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By Reuters

MILAN (Reuters) – Lazio’s Champions League hopes took a knock on Saturday when they were held to a 1-1 draw at home by Torino in a bad-tempered game featuring two red cards and two debatable penalty decisions.

Torino went ahead in first-half stoppage time when the referee awarded a penalty for minimal contact by Adam Marusic on Andrea Belotti who converted the kick himself amid angry protests from the hosts.

The visitors could have gone further ahead in the second half but Lorenzo De Silvestri fired wildly over from close range and they paid the price when Sergej Milinkovic-Savic rifled the equaliser for Lazio in the 62nd minute.

Lazio had a penalty appeal turned down after Francesco Acerbi claimed he was pushed by Soualiho Meite and tempers quickly flared again.

Marusic was sent off for dissent and Torino’s Meite followed after he appeared to slap Acerbi in a stormy finale.

Lazio stayed fourth, in the Champions League spots, with 32 points but are only two ahead of AS Roma after their neighbours won 2-0 at Parma (25 points) with second-half goals from Bryan Cristante and Cengiz Under.

Bottom-of-the-table Chievo finally won their first match of the season when Emanuele Giaccherini’s second-half free kick gave them a 1-0 win over Frosinone in a clash of the bottom two.

The Flying Donkeys, who had three points deducted for accounting irregularities, stayed bottom with eight points but moved two behind their opponents.

Genoa (20 points) and Fiorentina (26) drew 0-0 in a midtable clash although the visitors were furious when they had a penalty appeal turned down in the second half and coach Stefano Pioli was sent off for dissent.

Goals from Ignacio Pussetto and Valon Behrami gave Udinese (18 points) a 2-0 win over Cagliari (20).

(Writing by Brian Homewood; editing by Clare Fallon)