It was just one of those nights for the Partenopei who failed to take advantage of a number of quality chances in Florence. Both Napoli and Fiorentina came into tonight’s match off the back of roller coaster weeks. After a 7-1 beatdown of Roma in the Coppa Italia, Fiorentina were unable to get a win against struggling Udinese. Napoli on the other hand bounced back against Sampdoria after two disappointing results away against Milan. It’s always hard to predict what will happen when these two sides meet but the one thing that seemed assured is that there would be goals. Somehow neither side was able to find the back of the net due to poor finishing and some key saves from the promising young keepers Lafont and Meret.
The match got off to a rough start as Mario Rui had to be subbed off in the 6th minute with an apparent thigh injury. Napoli looked like the better team for much of the first half but Insigne and Callejon both missed two golden chances. Late in the first half Fiorentina began to grow into the game and would have gone a goal up if not for a terrific save by Meret on a shot from Veretout. The second half was more of the same as Lafont made a number of key saves to deny Mertens and Zielinski. Milik came on for Mertens in the 62nd minute but was also unable to find the back of the net. It’s too early to tell what life after Hamsik will look like for the Partenopei, but it’s hard to deny that the team looked like they were missing their captain at times tonight.
Meret: 7.5 Another clean sheet from Meret who has a great save to deny Veretout. Still needs to work on his distribution though.
Koulibaly: 7.5 A solid performance yet again from the Senegalese center back. Didn’t make as many forward runs as last week but still an impressive performance.
Maksimovic: 8 Great performance from Maksimovic who made a number of critical interceptions to deny Fiorentina.
Rui: N/A Shame to see Rui forced off with an injury so early in the match. Looked really good last week against Sampdoria.
Hysaj: 7 A few mistakes in the first half but a good showing in the second. It’ll be interesting to see if either him or Malcuitt can solidify themselves as the established rb.
Ruiz: 5 A poor performance from Ruiz who didn’t do much going forward and was often a liability in defense.
Allan: 8.5 Allan finally looks like himself again and seemed like he was all over the field today. Made a number of goal saving tackles and was a big reason Napoli kept a clean sheet.
Zielinski: 7 Showed rare physicality today and should’ve gotten an assist if Mertens was able to beat Lafont.
Callejon: 6 Almost recorded an assist but his pass to Milik was just a few inches too far. Solid at times but absent throughout too much of the match.
Mertens: 6 Could’ve scored a couple but wasn’t able to get the better of Lafont.
Insigne: 5.5 Insigne scored last week against Sampdoria I’m not convinced that his scoring woes have gone away yet. Seems to still lack confidence in front of the opposing goal.
Ghoulam: 7.5 Did a great job stepping up in place of the injured Rui. Almost recorded an assist but Mertens was denied by again by Lafont.
Milik: 6.5 Solid link up play since coming on as a sub but was not decisive enough in front of goal. Definitely adds a different dimension to the Napoli attack and would expect him to be back in the starting lineup against Zurich.