clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Gonzalo Higuain will play key role as Napoli battle Juventus

Higuain is going to be the focal point of Napoli's hopes to beat Juventus this weekend.

Maurizio Lagana/Getty Images

In form striker Gonzalo Higuain will hope to play a major part this weekend as Napoli take on league rivals Juventus in Turin. Higuain has 24 goals in 24 Serie A appearances this season and adding another goal (or two, or three) to his tally would go a long way toward helping the partenopei's chances.

Higuain was linked with moves away from Naples last summer (mostly to England) but certainly seems to be enjoying his role in Maurizio Sarri's system so far this season. His 24 league goals and 26 in all competitions this season easily surpassed his previous high for Napoli for a season -- and is snapping at his career high -- and there's no reason to suspect he won't continue to score more as the year goes on.

Higuain's presence in Napoli's attack has been incredible and lethal this season, and for a lot more than the goal-a-game pace he's been on. He's been so damn good that he demands lots of extra attention, attention that means that less is being paid to Napoli's other dangerous attackers, like Lorenzo Insigne and Jose Callejon, hopefully opening up further avenues of attack to exploit.

While Higuain's career numbers vs. Juve, three goals and an assist in eight matches, aren't as prolific as his returns this season have been, they're certainly no small feat either. His chances of adding to that record will also be buoyed by the news that Juventus defenders Giorgio Chiellini and Martin Caceres are set to miss out on the match due to injury. Midfielder Sami Khedira could also miss out if he fails to pass a late fitness test, according to manager Max Allegri.

Napoli head into the match at the top of Serie A and Higuain's sensational league form has played a critical role in their success. A win would see them go five points clear of Juve while a loss would place them a point below Juventus in the table. Either way, Higuain's involvement is going to play a key role in the result.