Serie A: Napoli V/S Juventus – Match Preview

The top domestic leagues across Europe are scheduled for a restart again after a mini international break extending over two weeks which saw the successful staging of the 2022 World Cup qualifiers. Football fans once again will tune in to the televisions on weekends to witness the end-to-end actions. And right when club football is recommencing again, SerieA is back with a blockbuster heavyweight clash on Saturday night. Italian giants and serial SerieA winner Juventus square off against Napoli at the Estadio Diego Armando Maradona tonight. It’s going to be oneof the best clashes of the SerieA this week along with the Milan Vs Lazio one. Nine-time consecutive champions Juve endured a forgetful season last year under new coach Andrea Pirlo. Juve somehow managed to finish fourth after days of panic about missing out on a UCL spot. They were also knocked out by Porto in UCL.

This season the Old Ladies will have to start everything anew after the departure of their star player Cristiano Ronaldo. Pirlo was also sacked from his managerial role and experienced Massimiliano Allegri was brought in search of the lost glory. After finishing last season with only the Coppa Italia, they will be in pursuit of some major trophies this year. They are into the third round now and will travel to Napoli to play this fixture.

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Napoli, also quite similarly had a decent last season last year but was left out by Juve from the top-four. The Home side finished fifth in the league and was subjected to immense criticism by the fans. For long parts of the season previous year, Napoli remained clear at the fourth spot in the table. But they bottled unexpectedly in the last matchweek and drew 1-1 to Verona at home. This all but ended their hopes of a top-four finish as Juve overtook them and gained a UCL spot. With only Europa League football to play this season, Napoli would be certainly aiming for a UCL spot. Let’s see if they can live up to the usual expectations surrounding them.

With all the elements of excitement intact, football fans all around the world are gearing up for an exciting matchup. Napoli Vs Juventus, the two-time Italian champion Vs the most successful club in Italy!!

Why to watch out for

For a match of such caliber, there can be no reason in the world that can stop you from watching it. Two of the biggest clubs in Italy are fighting it out against each other to fight for the important three points. Before the match, the two sides are in completely contrasting situations. Napoli has got their season kicked off to a near-perfect start by winning both their opening games. They are flying high now and a win at their home ground would guarantee them an excellent start.

On the other hand, Juventus made a disastrous start to this year’s SerieA by collecting the only 1point from two games. They drew 2-2 to Udinese away and lost 0-1 to Empoli in Turin. Undoubtedly, Allegri has made the worst start ever in his managerial career ever all along. He needs to quickly fix the glitches in the team and needs to put the team back on track. After Ronaldo’s exit, the team needs to show some great character in order to have that winning mentality once again.

Napoli doesn’t have much to ponder for before the game and they only need to hold their nerves right till the end. They will have to play some quality football and press for a win from the very beginning. Spalletti exactly knows how to make the best out of the team and edge out a win. Napoli has all their boxes ticking right now but shouldn’t be overconfident before the game and rather focus on winning it. It’s gonna be a cracking game on Saturday for everyone to watch the two teams of high stature renew rivalry. The match is slated for a 21:30 IST  kickoff or 16:00 GMT.

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Napoli

The Gli-Azzurri’s have seen their new season get off to a rollicking start by winning their first two games comfortably. The Blues are coming onto this match after defeating Genoa 2-1 away from home. The visitors gained the lead through a Fabian Ruiz strike from an assist by Matteo Politano in the first half. Andrea Cambiaso then equalized for the home side putting further pressure on the away side. But Andrea Petagna turned out to be the super-sub for Napoli as he scored within 2minutes after coming off the bench. Mario Rui delivered an excellent assist which lead to the winner. In all, Napoli dished out a dominating performance with almost two-thirds of ball possession. They also had 14 shots on goal out of which 8 were on target.

Napoli’s only concern for them will be that they have failed to convert a lot of chances that came their way. Before the high voltage game against Juve, Spalletti will definitely work to bolster the attacking third. Hirving Lozano was the one to cut out a sorry figure in the match. Juve’s defense is also enough good to make trouble for their attackers to score. But the trio of Insigne -Politano -Lozano makes their best play come out when they play against quality oppositions. It remains to be seen how Napoli fares against a comparatively weak Juve team this weekend.

Napoli (Spalleti) Juventus ( Allegri)
Napoli (Spalleti) Juventus ( Allegri)

Juventus

The Old ladies are off to a tragic start to the 2021-22 season and have made the comeback of Allegri quite sour. They somehow managed to draw the first game courtesy of Ronaldo’s late equalizer but soon lost the next without him. Juve has to regroup now quickly and start everything freshly after the departure of their star player. They lost 0-1 to Empoli at home on account of a shocking display by the team. Leonardo Mancuso gave the visitors an early lead thanks to his wonderful strike. The hosts could never recover from it after going down so early in the first half. They recorded 18 shots towards goal but only 5 of them were on target compared to Empoli’s only three. Keeping greater possession couldn’t help them either too. Allegri now has to point out the flaws in the team that had been hurting them so much.

Allegri has to bring out the best of the players in the upcoming matches so as to bring the team back to winning ways. For a team of Juve’s caliber, earlier, facing Napoli wasn’t any big thing and they could defeat them easily. But, for now, it’s a bit complicated for the Turin giants because of their recent slump in form. Let’s see if they can put everything right and take the team collectively to a win against their opponents.

Team News

Juventus

Injured – Federico Chiesa, Kaio Jorge, Arthur

Doubtful ( because of late return from international):- Aaron Ramsey, Paulo Dybala, Danilo, Alex Sandro, Rodrigo Bentancur, Juan Cuadrado

Predicted Lineups

Juventus Predicted Lineup
Juventus Predicted Lineup

Napoli

Injured :- Alex Meret, Diego Demme, Faouzi Ghoulam, Stanislav Lobotka

Predicted Lineups

Napoli Predicted Lineup
Napoli Predicted Lineup

Head to Head

Napoli and Juventus have faced 176 times across all competitions to date. As expected, Juventus have the upper hand in the encounters with 84 wins out of them. Napoli has won 43 and 49 other matches that ended in a stalemate. In the most recent meeting between these giants, Juventus won it thanks to Ronaldo and Dybala’s Goals.

Players to Watch out for

Juventus

Paulo Dybala

The Argentine is one of the most important players in the Juventus team now after the outgoing of Cristiano Ronaldo. He will have to play a pivotal role for the team now and has to lead the attack on his shoulders. Against Napoli, Allegri would hope that his starman comes out with a solid performance to help his side register a win.

Juventus
Juventus – Dybala and Juan Cuadrado

Juan Cuadrado

The veteran Colombian int’l is still one the most vital players in this Juve team. He has rocked in the previous season with over 15 assists and became the leading fullback in Europe. Age has been just a number for him and his everyday performances testify to it. If Juve is to do something good, then this man has to be at the pinnacle of his form.

Napoli

Fabian Ruiz

The Spanish midfielder is practically the engine of the whole Napoli team. He controls the whole midfield for them and maintains a swift balance between defense and attack. His passing range is exceptional as well and it makes him one of the most key players. His duel with Bentancur in the midfield could potentially decide the outcome of the match. Spalletti will hope that the midfield general remains on the top of his game tomorrow.

Napoli Players
Napoli – Ruiz and Koulibaly

Kalidou Koulibaly

The Senegalese center-back is the undisputed star of Napoli’s defense for a long time. He has been a rock at the back and has proved to be their main man for since long. On Saturday, he has a task cut out against Juve’s attackers and will have the responsibility to stop them. Napoli’s outcome would largely depend on how he performs on that day.

Conclusion

In all respects, this high voltage match is going to be an enticing and enthralling one. Both the teams will be desperate to win this one and gain the edge over others. Napoli would have the aim of making it three out of three when they face the Turin giants. Juve will instead be looking for their first win of the season and bag home all the three points. Expect a fierce and enjoyable encounter to take place between these two sides. Don’t miss even a minute of action on Saturday night!!

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