Napoli are set to play Palermo on Sunday, and the timing might be absolutely perfect. Just when Napoli need a huge, emphatic win the most, they find themselves lined up against a team that looks awfully vulnerable right now.
Palermo have been wracked with drama over the last few weeks as club president Maurizio Zamparini and manager Beppe Iachini squaring off in the media and club offices, ending in Iachini leaving the club for the second time this season. Walter Novellino is in charge now, but with the tram wracked with chaos and uncertainty, who knows how focused Palermo can possibly be right now.
Napoli come into the match looking strong, having just thumped Chievo soundly and looking like they've emerged from their six week run of poor form that saw them slip out of the top spot in Serie A and out of the Europa League. They're healthy, they're hungry, and their ready to take names and kick -- well, you know.
Palermo haven't won in seven matches, and have lost six times in the new year, winning just twice in those eleven matches. They've given up at least three goals five times in that run, and have been shut out four times. If Napoli don't win this game, they need to take a long, hard look in the mirror. A goal or five in the first half with a strong defensive showing would be an excellent way to keep that from being necessary.
Projected Lineups Sure To Be Wrong
Palermo: Sorrentino; Struna, Andjelkovic, Gonzalez, Pezzella; Rispoli, Hiljemark, Jajalo, Quaison; Vazquez; Gilardino
Napoli: Reina; Hysaj, Albiol, Koulibaly, Ghoulam; Allan, Jorginho, Hamsik; Callejon, Higuain, Insigne
At A Glance
Palermo: 17th; 7W 6D 15L; League Form: LDLLDL
Napoli: 2nd; 18W 7D 3L; League Form: WDDLWW
Reverse Fixture: Napoli 2-0 Palermo
Napoli only scored twice -- through Gonzalo Higuain and Dries Mertens -- but utterly dominated the run of the match. There were some nerves at times in the match, but the result was never really in doubt. The win came at a crucial time for Napoli, with key reserves stepping into the lineup and playing at a high level as Napoli were ramping up into the title chase. It was a great result, and now Napoli need to repeat it one more time.
TV: Sky Calcio 1, Sky Sport 1 HD Italia (Italy), BT Sport Europe (U.K.), RAI International
Online: beIN Sports Connect (U.S.), Sky Go Italia (Italy), BT Sport Live Streaming (U.K.)
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