By Alasdair Mackenzie
(Reuters) – Two goals from Felipe Caicedo spurred Lazio to a 2-1 win over 10-man Sampdoria in Serie A on Sunday and keep their European qualification hopes alive.
After Sampdoria midfielder Gaston Ramirez was shown a second yellow card on the brink of halftime, the home side rallied and pulled one back when Serie A top scorer Fabio Quagliarella rattled in his 23rd league goal of the season from close range.
Nicola Murru was inches away from equalising with a rasping shot from the edge of the box that struck the post, before Lazio substitute Ciro Immobile smashed a free kick off the crossbar and Sampdoria striker Gregoire Defrel shot wide at the end of a breakaway with the goal at his mercy.
The result moved Lazio above Torino, who face AC Milan later on Sunday, into seventh place on 55 points.
Lazio remain three points adrift of city rivals AS Roma in the fourth and final Champions League qualifying spot.
Ninth-placed Sampdoria have 48 points with four rounds remaining.
(Reporting by Alasdair Mackenzie, editing by Pritha Sarkar)