26th of October 2018 Author: Johnny Karp
Napoli are hoping to record their third consecutive Serie A victory when they face AS Roma at San Paolo Stadium on Sunday. They were unable to win this fixture last season, Roma pulled off a spectacular 4-2 victory in Naples after having lost 1-0 against Napoli at home in the first half of the campaign. In fact, the last four matches between these two sides all produced away victories. Moreover, there has been just one draw between these two teams in the last fourteen direct matches. Overall, Roma had a slight advantage in recent years as they have won three of the last six direct meetings, while Napoli won just two, both away from home.
Napoli have recovered well after the 3-1 loss at Juventus at the end of September, they defeated Sassuolo and Udinese in Serie A and this week they nearly pulled off a big Champions League upset in Paris. Carlo Ancelotti and his men had a 2-1 lead over Paris Saint-Germain at Parc des Princes but Angel Di Maria scored in the 93rd minute to make it 2-2. Forward Lorenzo Insigne picked up a knock during that intense match and is an injury doubt for Sunday's game, but Faouzi Ghoulam has recovered from his injury and will be available for selection. Vlad Chiriches, Amin Younes and Simone Verdi are injured and will definitely miss out.
Roma have been struggling for consistency since the start of the season, they always seemed to alternate great performances and good results with shocking defeats. That was the case during the past few days, last weekend they lost 2-0 at home against Spal in Serie A and this week they hammered CSKA Moscow 3-0 in the Champions League. They have already lost three out of nine matches in Serie A this season, with this kind of form they will be unable to challenge for a top-four finish. Javier Pastore has a muscular problem and will have to be assessed closer to kick-off, while Diego Perotti, Justin Kluivert and Rick Karsdrop are out of contention.
Napoli: Ospina - Hysaj, Albiol, Koulibaly, Rui - Callejon, Allan, Hamsik, Zielinski - Insigne - Milik
Roma: Olsen - Florenzi, Manolas, Fazio, Kolarov - Nzonzi, De Rossi - Under, Pellegrini, El Shaarawy - Dzeko
My prediction: Napoli to win 3-1, Carlo Ancelotti's men were impressive in Paris and they should be able to defeat Roma.
Here are the odds for the match at Bet365:
Napoli win - 1.75
Draw - 3.60
Roma win - 5.00
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Roma took the early lead in that one and somewhat logically Napoli has all the initiative all the way since.
But the equalizer came very late - in the 90th minute which not allow the home side to compete for the win.
It would be interesting if Napoli could follow the Juvesntus pace this season and make the title race(if any) at least somewhat interesting. It's obvious that none of the rest contenders could be good enough of doing so.
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