The start of the match wasn’t easy, but it’s working: Napoli have a 1-0 lead over Juventus in Turin in the Coppa Italia semifinal, their first ever lead over Juventus in their new home stadium.
That’s Jose Callejon pouncing on an inch-perfect pass from Lorenzo Insigne, darting past his defender and slotting home with ease. And while some parties bemoaned the marking on the play...
What kind of marking at the back post is that???— BWRAO (@JuventusNation) February 28, 2017
... the reality is that the goal was scored thanks more to clever play from Napoli than from poor play from Juventus. Yes, Juventus marked the sequence poorly, but Callejon got free like he did because he was able to get a favorable one-on-one matchup on Kwadwo Asamoah thanks to Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci feeling like they had to mark Arkadiusz Milik. That was thanks to how Napoli had been playing for the five minutes or so prior, with similar situations consistently seeing the ball go to Milik. That gave Callejon the space he needed to make his run, and Insigne made no mistake in picking him out.
But perhaps the biggest part of this is that Napoli have never had the lead at Juventus Stadium before. Napoli’s record at the newest home of Juventus hasn’t been horrible compared to some teams, but they’ve never lead the Old Lady at her retirement home. This time, they managed to snatch the walker out from under her, and that’s giving them an early advantage in their Coppa Italia tie.