After having their Scudetto celebration ruined last weekend, Napoli will play Udinese away on Thursday night in an attempt to win the Serie A championship.
After securing a comfortable 3-0 victory against Cremonese, Andrea Sottil’s team suffered a 1-0 loss against Leece when Tottenham Hotspur-bound player, Destiny Udogie, conceded a penalty, and Marco Silvestri failed to save it.
This defeat marked their fifth consecutive loss on the road, whereas they have not faced a defeat in Serie A at home since January.
Udinese has already beaten Milan clubs and Roma at the Dacia Arena this season, so hosting the current league leaders, Napoli, may be relatively easy.
If results go their way in the remaining fixtures, Udinese can finish as high as eighth in the league standings. Therefore, they are likely to offer Napoli a challenging ride on Thursday.
Udinese Serie A Form: L D L W L
Despite a minor setback in their recent match against Salernitana, which saw their regional rivals deny them a victory with Boulaye Dia’s equalizer, Napoli’s first Scudetto since 1990 seems all but inevitable.
Napoli is enjoying a commanding 15-point lead at the top of the Serie A table, and it is only a matter of time before they clinch their third national title. Their path to glory was paved after their deflating 1-1 draw against Salernitana was followed by Lazio’s loss at Inter.
Although Napoli suffered a disappointing exit from Europe at the hands of Milan, Luciano Spalletti’s side has shown immense resilience and character throughout the Serie A campaign.
Despite recent signs of either nerves or fatigue, Napoli’s last-gasp victory against Juventus took them closer to the elusive prize they have been chasing for three decades.
Napoli Serie A Form: L W D W D
The home team failed to score any goals during their recent match at Via del Mare, and it was evident that they needed their regular front pair, Isaac Success and Beto, who were both out due to injury.
Success was nursing a thigh injury, while Beto struggled with a back problem. However, there is hope that both players will return to action in the midweek fixture.
Napoli has received a boost ahead of their match against Udinese, as Giovanni Simeone and Matteo Politano have returned to full fitness and are likely to feature in the game.
However, the team will still be without Mario Rui, who sustained an injury during their Champions League exit at the hands of Milan.
Udinese expected starting lineup:
Silvestri; Becao, Bijol, Perez; Ehizibue, Samardzic, Walace, Lovric, Udogie; Pereyra; Beto
Napoli’s expected starting lineup:
Meret; Di Lorenzo, Kim, Rrahmani, Olivera; Anguissa, Lobotka, Zielinski; Lozano, Osimhen, Kvaratskhelia
Head to Head
Regarding head-to-head clashes between Napoli and Udinese, the former has recently enjoyed a dominant record.
Out of the 35 matches played between the two teams, Napoli has emerged victorious in 19, whereas Udinese has managed to win only six times.
Time, Date & Venue
Date: Thursday, May 04
Time: 06:45 pm, UTC
Venue: Dacia Arena, Udine
Although Napoli had a phenomenal start to the season, they have struggled to maintain the same level of intensity in recent weeks.
Despite this, their impressive performance throughout the campaign cannot be overlooked, and they have rightfully secured their first Scudetto since the days of Diego Maradona.