There’s one last match in the Serie A season, and it’s almost time for Napoli to take the pitch against Sampdoria. There’s actually still even a small chance that Napoli can finish the season in second place, albeit a very small one. But more than that, it’s time to cap off a season that’s been a wild ride. Often a frustrating one, sure, but a wild ride nonetheless.
Napoli are throwing out an almost full-strength side to start this match — Vlad Chiriches and Piotr Zielinski start in place of a less-than-fully-fit duo in Raul Albiol and Allan — against a Sampdoria side that hasn’t won in almost two months and is limping into the finish of the season with a makeshift side. Napoli should be able to dispatch them with ease, just as long as they commit the same kind of focus and lethality to their approach that they’ve been carrying for the last several weeks.
And if Napoli do win, there’s a chance that Sampdoria’s local rivals can give them a leg up. If Genoa win or draw with Roma, Napoli can move into second place with a win, something they very badly need in order to avoid the ridiculousness of a Champions League playoff. They can give one Napoli player a hand in another way, too -- if Genoa hold Edin Dzeko goalless, a brace for Dries Mertens would see him win the capocannoniere title, giving Napoli Serie A’s top goalscorer two years in a row with two very different players — a truly remarkable feat.
Good luck lads. Forza Napoli!
Napoli: Reina; Hysaj, Koulibaly, Chiriches, Ghoulam; Zielinski, Jorginho, Hamsik; Callejon, Mertens, Insigne
Sampdoria: Puggioni; Škriniar, Regini, Bereszynski, Silvestre; Torreira, Barreto, Bruno Fernandes, Linetty; Schick, Quagliarella
When: Sunday, 6 p.m. CET, 12 p.m. ET
Where: Stadio Luigi Ferraris, Genoa, Italy
TV: beIN Sports (U.S. - English), beIN Sports en Español (U.S. - Spanish), Premium Calcio 1 (Italy)
Online: beIN Sports Connect (U.S.), Sky Go Italia, Premium Play (Italy)