After playing a Serie A match three days ago, Napoli would be back on the pitch for quarterfinals of Coppa Italia against the same opponent, AC Milan. This match would be difficult for Napoli, as a couple of days ago Milan played Napoli very tough and gave them everything they could handle. Although it finished in a 0-0 draw Milan realized the Napoli weaknesses, and it would pay off in the long run.
Both clubs would stick to similar tactics as the match a couple days ago, Napoli used a 4-4-2 formation. Ancelotti wanted to use the same game plan as the last match by pressing Milan up high and wanted to win the Midfield battle. It wasn’t a bad game plan but the difference for Milan in this match would be Gattuso Starting Krzysztof Piątek. Milan Would stick with the 4-3-3.
The match would finish off where the last match ended, a continuous back and forth between the two sides. Until in 11th minute Piątek showed us what life with him is going to be like in Milan, he scored an absolute banger to put Milan up 1-0. Napoli wouldn’t be shaken as they counterattacked and had some opportunities until 15 minutes later Piątek would find the back of the net for an even stellar goal. Napoli had no answers and would be eliminated from Coppa Italia yet again…..
Alex Meret- 6
The young Italian keeper did not play the match Saturday but would get the Coppa Italia start. He was not to blame for in this loss, on both goals it was difficult to get stops when a player like Piątek was playing so well, Ancelotti Still has full confidence in the young keeper.
Kevin Malcuit- 6
The Frenchmen would receive another start. He played poor compared to his Saturday performance. He would have bad turnovers and really was not much of an effect on the attack. He did have a couple of huge defensive plays but other than that he could have played better. He would be subbed for Callejón in the 85th minute.
Nikola Maksimovic- 4.5
It had to be the worse performance by the Serbian international, as he would be a culprit on not one but two goals. He just seemed to be a step off and lost this match. A player like Krzysztof Piątek’s talent has been known and giving him so much space was inexcusable. Ancelotti better hope Albiol returns back to form.
Kalidou Koulibaly- 6.5
It was a rough going for the world-class Senegalese defender. With Krzysztof Piątek’s explosion, it added more pressure on him. He covered more ground than he usually does. He still played well just a rough outing for the squad as a whole.
Faouzi Ghoulam– 6.5
After the Mario Rui’s antics Saturday, it would be in question whether he’d get his regular minutes. For Coppa Italia however, Ancelotti decided to go with Ghoulam at left back. He would be a threat from out wide in the attack. For whatever reason, he and Insigne would seem to be out of sync. Good match by the Algerian overall.
After his bad performance Saturday, Ancelotti Would push him outside. He would still be a vital option in the attack, but like the rest of the squad, he couldn’t take advantage of his opportunities.
Michael Allan- 5
After missing the last match, Ancelotti realized his tenacity is what the Midfield was missing. No brainer Ancelotti went with Allan, unfortunately, though Allan did not play like himself, probably his worse match this season. He simply just did not seem to be in the match. He would be subbed out before the second half for Ounas.
Amadou Diawara- 5.5
Ancelotti went with Diawara because of trust he has with him in the midfield, Diawara has been playing well in a traditional defensive Midfield position. Though he would not produce much on the attack, Ancelotti Would sub him out the 58th minute for Dries Mertens.
Piotr Zielinski- 6
Zielinski Would get the second straight start, starting on the outside. Like the last match, he would drift to the back on the attack, to not leave open space on counter attacks. He would get his opportunities to take some shots but could not capitalize.
Lorenzo Insigne- 5.5
Lorenzo is in a drought and it’s not getting any better for him, he seemed out of sync with his teammates, and even worse he just looks frustrated or he’s overthinking when he’s out on the pitch. In the final third is when he mostly would crumble.
Arkadiusz Milik- 5.5
Milik, he has always fallen behind the shadow of Lewandowski in the national team, now he’s the Polish third fiddle with this Piątek’s performance. When Napoli needed someone to step up and get a goal he couldn’t do anything. He would be quiet for most of the match.
Adam Ounas- 5
Ounas came in the start of the second half for Michael Allan to create some attack. He wouldn’t be able to do much and was pretty quiet in the second.
Dries Mertens- 5
Mertens came in the 58th minute for Diawara, Ancelotti again getting more attack on the pitch with this sub. Mertens seemed to have hurt himself in the last match with Milan and you can tell he seemed to be hurt in training and in the match. Dries would be quiet for the most part.
Jose Callejon- 4.5
Callejón came in late, in the 85th minute. It was Ancelotti’s last gasp at a spark in attack. He played out wide but would play up in the Midfield. However, no one was saving Napoli on this day.
Unfortunately for Napoli, their Coppa Italia run is over, it would end from the right leg of Piątek. In the first matchup on Saturday, Gattuso figured out a way to neutralize the Napoli attack, the difference is he realized he needed to give Piątek a chance up top and it would make the difference. This Napoli squad needs to figure it out, they seemed out of sync in the final third and couldn’t even get one goal despite dominating the stat line.
Right now for Napoli Europa league is very much in reach and is a trophy they should go out and win. They continue Serie A play this weekend against Sampdoria, as they return home to San Paolo, it’s probably what they need right now.