Sunday in the Stadio San Paolo marked another chapter in the epic Derby Del Sud with AS Roma. For both squads it has been a challenge on its own trying to keep up in the table with Juventus, a win in this Derby would help stay the course of Juve. After Napoli’s midweek draw against PSG, There was a sense of hunger to get back on the pitch. In a hard fought match Sunday, Napoli was able to secure some points as they drew Roma 1-1.
The formation remained the same, as they lined up in a 4-4-2.
In net, we got David Ospina again. He has been playing well and seems to have gained the trust of Ancelotti with Alex Meret fit and ready to play. He had another solid match against Roma, looking Sharp and taking command. The lone goal he allowed was a result of a mistake in the defensive assignment.
In the backline we got Hysaj-Koulibaly-Albiol-Rui. The main thing we were concerned about in the lineup was whether or not Ancelotti Would continue with Mario Rui in the lineup this week, and Ancelotti did. Although he wasn’t impressive he did his part and played much better than he did against PSG. Koulibaly surprisingly didn’t have his best match, on the lone goal he missed his defensive assignment on Edin Dzeko, allowing Dzeko to get an assist to Stephen El Shaarawy. Malcuit came in the 70th minute for Hysaj, adding a dangerous attacking presence on both sides.
In the Midfield Ancelotti went with Callejón-Allan-Hamsik-Fabian. They continue to win the battles in the midfield, getting balls back and creating a lot of opportunities. Callejón’s usual blunders created an opportunity to get the equalizer. Allan and Fabian both played superbly. Hamsik also had a good match as was able to tie Napoli legend Giuseppe Bruscolotti in appearances with the club.
Up top we got Insigne-Milik. Milik was quiet for most of the match, quite honestly he’s suffering from a bit of a drought. Milik hasn’t scored since his best game of the season against Parma over a month ago. Insigne was great as always, he was creating more chances for others instead of for himself in this match. Mertens subbed in the 56th minute for Milik, which created a spark. He was able to get the late equalizer in the 90th minute putting him now three goals away from Napoli great Careca who’s in seventh for the all-time goal-scoring list.
Napoli came close to losing this Derby match, although they did dominate in the stat sheet and looked like the better squad. Thanks to their aggressive play and Ancelotti’s tactics they were able to pull a point away. The draw does give more cushion for Juventus, as well as an Inter squad who look better and better as the weeks go on. They didn’t get bragging rights but no time to focus on that as this week Napoli host Empoli, who are not happy after playing a tough match to Juventus. Let’s see what Ancelotti’s Army has in store for us.
FORZA NAPOLI SEMPRE