Napoli host AC Milan in Serie A on Sunday night. The hosts and defending Scudetto winners sit in fourth place after nine rounds with a five-point gap to the summit. The Rossoneri have scored just once in their last four matches and have been beaten twice in the last week.
Napoli haven’t been as convincing as last season. They lost 2-1 at home to Lazio in round three of Serie A and then drew 2-2 at Genoa in the following match. In their last eight matches in all competitions, they’ve taken six points from three UEFA Champions League matches whilst dropping five points in five Serie A matches in that run.
They won 2-1 away at Braga but then drew 0-0 at Bologna. Two Serie A wins with eight goals scored followed. Rudi Garcia’s then lost 3-2 at home to Real Madrid and then 3-1 at home to Fiorentina in Serie A. They’ve rallied to arrest the slump with a 3-1 victory at Hellas Verona and then a 1-0 win at Union Berlin. They only produced 0.25 xG in that win and had only one shot after the 65th minute.
Napoli Team News
Top striker Victor Osimhen is ruled out with an injury sustained in the 3-1 loss to Fiorentina. Giacomo Raspadori scored in the midweek win in Germany, and he will continue to lead the line. Experienced defender Juan Jesus is ruled out with a hamstring injury.
Key midfielder Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa is two weeks from a return from a thigh injury. Coach Rudi Garcia named the same XI for the last two matches. There could be a single chance to the lineup here with Eljif Elmas recalled in preference to Jens-Lys Cajuste.
The Partenopei will go all out to win and to close the gap to the Milan clubs in Serie A. Without Osimhen, they’re not as potent going forward.
A bigger focus on a clean sheet is expected against a goal-shy AC Milan team. One goal may be enough to take the three points.
AC Milan Form
The Rossoneri have lost their last two matches as injuries and suspensions have taken their toll. Their loss last Sunday to Juventus saw them only have one shot on target and 0.31 xG produced. In midweek, PSG outclassed them in France to leave their Champions League progression hopes in tatters. The Paris outfit limited AC Milan to just 0.58 xG.
Before those losses, Milan had two 0-0 draws in Europe, at home to Newcastle and away at Dortmund. In Serie, it was seven wins and just one defeat in Serie A, albeit a 5-1 demolition away at Inter Milan.
AC Milan Team News
Stefano Pioli has goalkeeper Mike Maignan and left-back Theo Hernandez available in Serie A again after they missed the Juventus defeat. Malick Thiaw is banned for this match so Davide Calabria will come in at right back with Pierre Kalulu moving into a central role.
Rade Krunic returned to the starting XI in midfield against PSG and will play this one. Ruben Loftus-Cheek is doubtful, and Ismael Bennacer is injured in midfield. Samuel Chukwueze is ruled out in attack, but Luka Jovic and Noah Okafor should shake off knocks. Fikayo Tomori took a knock against PSG, so Simon Kjaer is on standby to deputise at centre back.
AC Milan Motivation
Milan have had two tough results this week and their goals have dried up. If they’re missing both of their first-choice centre-backs, then a more defensive approach is expected.
They will initially play to win but a draw here is a decent result on the road and Pioli may settle for one in the second half.
Napoli have lost their last 2 home matches, conceding 6 goals.
Napoli have lost 4 of their last 12 home Serie A matches.
Napoli have lost their last 3 home Serie A matches vs AC Milan (8-1 aggregate)
Milan have lost their last 2 matches.
AC Milan have scored just 1 goal in their last 4 matches.
Milan have won 5 of their last 6 away Serie A matches.
This match is hard to call because of some key injuries on both sides. Napoli have a bad record in this fixture but it’s a good time to face Milan. A home win by a one-goal margin may offer the best return in this one, or a clean sheet for the hosts.
Best Bet: Both Teams to Score No at 2.05
Value Bet: Napoli to keep a clean sheet at 2.95
High-Value Bet: Napoli to win by exactly one goal at 3.80