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Napoli 2, Parma 0: Player ratings and Man of the Match poll

A smart and composed performance from Napoli saw them beat Parma with little resistance. What players stood out from the pack?

Look at all that swag Dries is showing off. Just look at it.
Look at all that swag Dries is showing off. Just look at it.
Giuseppe Bellini/Getty Images

Was it pretty? No. Was it effective? Yes. Napoli won 2-0 and while no one had a truly game-shattering performance, there was a lot of solid effort across the board. Let's break it down.

Starters

Rafael Cabral - 6 - Didn't really have anything to do. Got wrong-footed on Lodi's shot that hit the post, but with a cut-back that good, almost every goalkeeper in the world gets wrong-footed.

Christian Maggio - 7 - Was not challenged defensively at all. Did make one really nice play to cut out a ball over the top to Acquah after Henrique failed to track his run. Acquah would have scored otherwise. Also served up the assist for Zapata's goal.

Henrique Buss - 3 - What the crap, dude? Almost gave up a goal when he held Acquah onside, then didn't follow his run when a ball got blasted over the top to him. Henrique owes Maggio a steak dinner for saving his butt on that one. Then a few minutes later, went blazing forward in to the final third... then just kind of sauntered back when Parma won the ball back and countered through the area he was supposed to be in. Henrique should ride the pine for awhile after those two mistakes.

Miguel Britos - 6 - Wasn't given much to do, didn't make any mistakes with it. Could have done better on an attacking set piece, but otherwise had a solid performance.

Faouzi Ghoulam - 7 - Was a constant menace in attack, and kept both Palladino and later Rispoli firmly in his pocket. Yet another nice day for Ghoulam, who will be sorely missed when he's at AFCON.

Walter Gargano - 6 - Solid and unflashy but mistake-free for a second consecutive appearance. What is this sorcery? Also won a header, which just makes Parma's midfield look really, really bad.

David Lopez - 7 - Was again a boss. Like (almost) always. Got up and supported the attack more than we usually see, and was actually quite good at it. Would not hate seeing Lopez do more of that in the future.

Jose Callejon - 7 - Drew some derision for getting greedy on a second-half counter, taking a shot instead of laying the ball off for Hamsik, who had a clear shot and perfect angle on an already-comitted Mirante. Otherwise, though, looked better than he has in awhile and was unlucky not to score.

Marek Hamsik - 7 - Wasn't perfect, but drove play well and was plenty active. Had a really hard time connecting with Higuain late in the match for some reason. They just weren't on the same page at all as far as what they were trying to do.

Dries Mertens - 7 - A constant menace to Parma's back line in the first half, and got his first Serie A goal of the season. Mertens kinda telegraphed where he was going with the shot, but he hammered it so hard it didn't matter.

Duvan Zapata - 8 - Zapata is an absolute beast of a player. Used his power to bully Parma's back line over and over and over again, resulting in his goal and a bevy of other chances. A smart play in the second half saw him nick the ball off a dawdling Paletta, but his first touch was too heavy and he couldn't get a shot away. It's almost a shame that he got subbed off when he did, because it looked like he had another goal coming.

Substitutes

Jonathan De Guzman - 6 - Not a flashy performance off the bench, but a good one for De Guzman. Linked play all over the upper end of Napoli's attack, and was a nuisance with his runs.

Gonzalo Higuain - 6 - Was active and effective up top, and was a little unlucky not to score. As mentioned above, seemed to be on a totally different page than Hamsik, often running the opposite way that Hamsik expected him to when sending passes his way. Very bizarre to see.

Jorginho - 6 - Really just brought in to get a beat-up Callejon off the pitch. Helped resume Napoli's domination of possession, though, so that was nice.

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Who was your man of the match for Napoli today against Parma? Vote in the poll below, and discuss the performances in the comments!