Napoli could not gain ground on Serie A as they were held back by a 1-1 draw in a struggling SPAL. Juventus and Inter Milan are known to be the pacesetters for Serie A in which Napoli was supposed include themselves after the supposed-to-win match. Though Arkadiusz Milik put them in front very early in the first half of the match, soon the side for Carlo Ancelotti fastened themselves by getting a strike from Jasmin Kurtic. Fabian Ruiz, who played as a substitute hit the post for the visitors because they were trying to push for the winner in the second half. This is the third time when the home side avoided getting defeated in this season.
On Saturday, Napoli had a great win by 3-2. Napoli emerged victorious after a debatable 1-0 loss to Inter Milan. Napoli was playing without Koulibaly, which gave a great chance to Ancelotti. Because of their tactical skills, Napoli got a lead as the ball came to Milik at the apex of a 6-yard box which was attempted by Mertens. Napoli's hope for an easy win got vanished as Federico Santander headed which result into an equalizer at the 37th minute from an easy free kick. And the 2nd half started with the Napoli controlling the ball. Milik scored his second goal by the header in the 51st minute by a curling cross delivery by Malcuit. But in the 80th minute of the game, the hosts again made the score equal. As the situation became difficult for both the teams, the long-range strike by Mertensin the 88th minute confirmed a win for Napoli. The goal of the Mertens went under the outstretched arms of Bologna goalkeeper.
An absence of Koulibaly can be clearly seen in the match as Bologna scored 2 goals against Napoli. Throughout the season Koulibaly has helped Napoli from losing many games. As Zielinski moved back into the center next to Allan absence of Hamsik can be clearly seen. Even though Zielinski is a very talented and creative player but he cannot handle defense as Hamsik, which can be seen in between the game, where a gap between defense and the midfield was seemed to be a big problem.
Napoli manager Carlo Ancelotti wants his team to improve. He said that their form has not been good in recent weeks and this has caused them to lose some points on Juventus. Indeed Napoli is currently eight points behind Juventus in Serie A and Carlo Ancelotti said that this is not good enough.
The former Chelsea manager said that the objective of the team was to challenge for the title and that they are far from being to do this at the moment. He said that the team needs to improve on the pitch and that the players need to work harder when they do not have the ball. He said that they have been guilty sometimes of waiting for the ball to arrive at their feet and not putting pressure on the opposition.
Napoli have found themselves in an all too familiar position in pursuit of Juventus at the top of Serie A in the early stages of the campaign. Under Maurizio Sarri, the club almost ended the Bianconeri’s stranglehold on Italian football, only to lose out on the crown by four points. Their margin for error was non-existent and defeats at the hands of Roma and Fiorentina were to loom large. Sarri left Gil Azzurri at the end of the campaign to join Chelsea, while a former Blues manager Carlo Ancelotti made the decision to move to the Stadio San Paolo.
Early defeats to Sampdoria and to Juve have knocked them off the pace of Massimiliano Allegri’s side. Inter have joined the pursuit of Juventus at the top of the table, and although both teams have played well, the addition of Cristiano Ronaldo has appeared to make the Bianconeri almost unstoppable. The Portuguese has already played an important role for his team, saving them against Empoli on the road. It seems no matter what Ancelotti and his team do, they will always be playing catch up to Ronaldo and company.
For all the comings and goings across Europe this transfer window, Napoli's most significant transaction was the loss of their manager, Maurizio Sarri, to Chelsea. With the controversial and hard-nosed head coach gone, and with the arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo at Juventus and a number of big names at Roma, few people are counting on Napoli going one better than last season and pipping the Turin side to the Serie A title.
But writing off this team might be premature - with a few intelligent signings and the arrival of a veteran who knows his way to success in Italy in Carlo Ancelotti, the summer may actually have been a positive one for the Naples side. This could be the year that the team live up to their promise and step out of Juventus' shadow - and here are the reasons why.
Pep Guardiola has held on Napoli as one of the best teams in Europe at the moment. Manchester City have been grouped alongside the Italian outfit in the 2017-18 group stages.
Even though City have been able to avoid a tough group, manager Guardiola says that Napoli should not be treated lightly. In the past, City have largely been drawn against the likes of Bayern Munich, Barcelona, and Real Madrid in the group stages. It has led to repeated failings in the competition by City, who are yet to win the title even after spending vast sums of money.
Napoli has started the season not as good as they would have wanted and the draw with Sassuolo further dented their hopes of lifting the Serie A this term.
They were set to get a win but a late goal from Gregoire Defrel forced Napoli to share points with their visitors – their third straight stalemate in all competitions.
Napoli were held down in the Serie A title race as Balde Keita cancelled out MarekHamsik's second-half opener in less than three minutes to earn Lazio a 1-1 draw in Saturday's clash at the Stadio San Paolo.
Maurizio Sarri's men were aiming to get back onto the winning lane after losing 2-1 to the defending champions, Juventus last week. The hosts made a strong approach to the match as Dries Mertens and Lorenzo Insigne tirelessly challenged Lazio goalkeeper Federico Marchetti which brought him into action in the opening 45 minutes.
Pepe Reina has stated that Napoli is a better side without Gonzalo Higuain in the team.
He said that the sale of Higuain has allowed the club to strengthen various positions and this has made them become a much better side. He stated that they have a good manager in Maurizio Sarri and that the latter is constantly looking for ways to improve the team.
Napoli suffered a third consecutive defeat in all competitions and manager Sarri admitted that the club are making life difficult for themselves.
After an excellent start to the league campaign that saw them go toe-to-toe with Juventus in the last few games, a shock loss against Atalanta has seen results plummet since then. A 1-0 defeat against Atalanta would have been forgiven as a freak result, but Napoli showed signs of a much bigger hurt inside. The team lost 3-1 to Roma during the weekend and they followed this up with a shock 3-2 loss against Besiktas in the Champions League.