Roma held in Eternal City derby
Last Updated: 09/02/14 4:54pm
Alvaro Gonzalez competes for the ball with Francesco Totti
Roma missed a chance to close the gap on Serie A leaders Juventus after being held to a goalless draw at Lazio in Sunday's Eternal City derby.
The Giallorossi created enough opportunities to earn three points but found Lazio goalkeeper Etrit Berisha in fine form to deny them.
The outcome has left Roma nine points behind Juve, who drew 2-2 at Hellas Verona on Sunday. Roma do have a game in hand.
Lazio, who failed to test Roma goalkeeper Morgan De Sanctis the entire game, are still unbeaten since coach Edy Reja returned to the helm last month. They are ninth in the standings.
Roma, playing as the visitors on their home ground, went into the encounter at the Stadio Olimpico bolstered by their Coppa Italia midweek triumph over Napoli.
The Giallorossi dominated possession and had a goal disallowed in the 25th minute.
Maicon's bullet strike was cleared by Berisha but only as far as Gervinho, who was first to the ball. He struck past the keeper, only to see his goal ruled out by the referee for offside.
Roma continued to press forward and three minutes later Francesco Totti warmed Berisha's palms with a stinging drive from 30 yards that the keeper saved.
The Giallorossi almost broke the deadlock in the 39th minute when Maicon fed Miralem Pjanic in the box and his right-footed shot was kept out by Berisha.
Lazio struggled to break Roma's well-placed defence and early in the second half Stefano Mauri's long-range effort went wide.
In the 52nd minute, Roma's Kevin Strootman spotted Gervinho on the box but his angled shot was saved by Berisha.
Roma increased the tempo and went close to scoring in the 85th minute.
Substitute Michel Bastos controlled the ball in the area only to see his diagonal shot cleared by defender Abdoulay Konko with Berisha beaten.
At the other end, De Sanctis came off his line to punch away a dangerous cross directed at Miroslav Klose in what was the last chance of the game.
Italian Serie A