Napoli vs Lazio – prediction, likely formations and preview

Immobile in Napoli vs Lazio, Source - ilpost.it

Immobile in Napoli vs Lazio, Source – ilpost.it

Napoli vs Lazio is set to take place in Naples on Sunday evening, with Serie A resuming after the winter break. Simone Inzaghi’s side look to continue on from their 4-1 win over Novara last weekend when they travel to face off against Carlo Ancelotti’s side. Lazio failed to win their last Serie A game against Torino but won the two prior against Cagliari and Bologna 3-1 and 2-0 respectively. All eyes on Naples ahead of Sunday’s game and TheLaziali.com are here to break down what to expect from the game, the expected line-ups and a prediction of the game itself.

Napoli vs Lazio – Opposition Breakdown

In their last ten games, Napoli have won seven, drawn one and losing two; drawing at home to Chievo and losing away to Liverpool and Inter Milan 1-0. Napoli sit in 2nd place in Serie A, 9 points behind league leaders Juventus and just five points ahead of third-placed Inter. This season, at home, Napoli are unbeaten; winning eight and drawing two of their ten games in Naples so far this season. Lazio can perhaps gain confidence from the fact that one of Napoli’s two draws was against last-placed Chievo, a team Lazio drew with when they travelled to Verona.

Napoli, however, have won their last five home games on the trot – yet against easy opposition with Sassuolo or perhaps Red Star Belgrade in the Champions League being the toughest of their recent games. Napoli vs Lazio is the return leg of the fixture that kicked off the season, with Napoli coming back from a goal down to triumph over Lazio; goals from Milik and Insigne gifting the Neapolitans the three points in Rome.

Napoli are a somewhat reduced team at the moment; with Lorenzo Insigne and Kalidou Koulibaly both serving suspensions for red cards received in the controversial match between Napoli and Inter at San Siro in December. Allan has received too many yellow cards and Marek Hamsik has suffered a thigh injury. Dries Mertens is also reportedly touch-and-go in regards to his fitness and is as likely to play as he is to be a substitute, or not involved at all.

Napoli vs Lazio – The Biancocelesti View

Napoli vs Lazio promises to be an interesting test for Simone Inzaghi’s side, who, as aforementioned, are currently four games in a row unbeaten, with three wins in that time – welcomed with open arms after a winless run of 7 in all competitions over November and part of December. A fresh tactical approach has benefited the Biancocelesti greatly and the boss is constantly looking for ways to experiment with his existing formation slightly – from playing Luis Alberto, Joaquin Correa and Sergej Milinkovic-Savic together to playing a flat front two of Felipe Caicedo and Ciro Immobile in the Coppa Italia against Novara.

Lazio are without suspended Adam Marusic but look to have a clean bill of health heading into the game against Napoli. Correa, who missed the Coppa Italia clash due to illness, has recovered and will likely feature in some capacity or another on Sunday. Although Ancelotti’s side are by all means a tricky test, the injuries and suspensions that the Neapolitans are laden with proves to give Lazio somewhat of a psychological advantage. Going into the game with all their best options against a side who are missing their best defender and best forward, as well as potentially another top forward in Mertens.

 

Napoli vs Lazio – Predicted Formations

Napoli: Meret; Maksimovic, Luperto, Ghoulam, Hysaj; Zielinski, Fabian Ruiz, Diawara, Callejon; Milik, Ounas

Lazio: Strakosha; Radu, Acerbi, Luiz Felipe; Lulic, Milinkovic-Savic, Lucas Leiva, Parolo, Patric; Luis Alberto, Immobile

 

Napoli vs Lazio Prediction

It promises to be one of the most exciting fixtures in Serie A’s returning weekend and no doubt both teams will give it their all. Napoli, at full strength, should have little problems at home to Lazio – given Inzaghi’s form against top teams – but in their weakened state, Lazio may hold an advantage. With Napoli missing several key players, Lazio could take advantage and spring a surprise – yet you cannot ever rule out Napoli, a team that haven’t shied away from a late goal or two this season.

Prediction: Napoli 1-1 Lazio

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