SERIE A ROUND 1 MATCH PREVIEW: Fiorentina vs Napoli

The players returned from summer holiday with their families, have been training regularly and are now ready to hit the pitch once again for their respective clubs as the 2019/20 Serie A season commences this weekend in Italy.

For Round 1 of action, our attention turns to one of the opening weekend’s main events on the peninsula as Fiorentina play host to Napoli at the Stadio Artemio Franchi in Firenze.

Here is everything you need to know ahead of the clash. Continue reading

The Top Five Central/Attacking Midfielders From the 2018/19 Serie A Season

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From the midfield position, plenty of individuals turned up to elevate their respective sides in the 2018/19 Serie A season, thus making this area arguably the hardest to rank.

After careful thought and a hard look at the impact each qualifier had on their club’s midfield, here is the shortened list of the best five from this past season. Continue reading

Four Takeaways From Napoli’s 0-0 Stalemate with Milan

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Familiar faces met yet again last night at the San Siro as Gennaro Gattuso and his mentor Carlo Ancelotti squared off in a clash between Milan and Napoli.

The first half of action saw the Rossoneri assert themselves and threaten to go ahead, while the visitors swung momentum in their favor after the break only to see several attempts go awry.

In the end, the two played to a 0-0 draw. Here are four takeaways from the Partenopei’s stalemate in Milano: Continue reading

Window Shopping: 10 Impactful Serie A Transfer Deals From The Summer

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As we wave goodbye to 2018, and say hello to 2019, it is now time to list the 10 best performing transfers from the summer market – based on the impact each has provided to their respective clubs during the first half of the 2018-19 Serie A season. Continue reading

Three Keys for Napoli vs Liverpool

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Champions League Group C is a tight one between leaders Napoli, Paris Saint-Germain and last year’s runner-up Liverpool entering the final round of play. As things stand, the Partenopei lead PSG by a single point, while holding a three point cushion over the English giants who they will pay a visit tonight at Anfield.

Carlo Ancelotti’s Napoli can qualify for the Round of 16 through one of the following scenarios: 1) win or draw vs Liverpool, 2) lose by a goal, but score at least once (2-1, 3-2) and PSG wins/loses. Continue reading

Squad rotation continues to pay dividends for Carlo Ancelotti and Napoli

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Napoli turned around their UEFA Champions League Group C bout with Paris Saint-Germain on Tuesday, earning a 1-1 draw with strong second half efforts from Kalidou Koulibaly and Allan, as well as a cold-blooded penalty strike from Lorenzo Insigne.

As things stand, the Partenopei sit joint-first with Liverpool, and cling to a slight advantage on goal differential over the English outfits. Much of this success can be attributed to the individual efforts of many in the squad under manager Carlo Ancelotti. But, without question, the sharpness in play and positive results stem from the Italian’s meticulous approach towards tactical modifications and rotation. Continue reading

Napoli newcomer Fabián Ruiz demonstrating his worth to Carlo Ancelotti

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Life after Maurizio Sarri and Jorginho has gone over relatively smooth for title contenders Napoli. Manager Carlo Ancelotti has properly assessed the ‘Sarrismo’ blueprint left behind, is rotating more frequently than the Chelsea coach ever had and tinkers accordingly to the point where the Partenopei are becoming a less predictable outfit to handle.

One of the biggest areas of strength and adjustment lies in the midfield where Ancelotti has shown a willingness to integrate every player, and utilize them in more ways than one. Recently, the name garnering the most attention amongst supporters and ‘calcio’ observers alike is Fabián Ruiz who, with each appearance, is demonstrating his real worth to the Azzurri cause. Continue reading

Fabián Ruiz’s competitive debut for Napoli in UCL goes smoothly

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The 2018-19 UEFA Champions League group stage kicked off yesterday in Groups A through D. With Inter’s arousing come from behind victory late over Tottenham Hotspur stealing much of the attention, Napoli’s disappointing scoreless draw vs. FC Crvena Zvezda did little to stir any real major reaction across the football landscape. However, despite Carlo Ancelotti’s men leaving Rajko Mitić Stadium with just a point, summer acquisition Fabián Ruiz was every bit as good as advertised on his competitive debut. Continue reading

Carlo Ancelotti and Napoli work to establish Jorginho’s replacement

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The Carlo Ancelotti era is officially underway in Naples for the Italian boss, with pre-season in full swing and preparations being made for his Napoli side to have another go at dethroning the mighty Juventus for the coveted Scudetto in 2018-19.

Thus far, president Aurelio De Laurentiis and his Partenopei have been relatively active on the transfer front, having already bolstered the roster with Simone Verdi, Alex Meret and Fabian Ruiz – among other acquisitions. On the departure side of business, veteran keeper Pepe Reina and Christian Maggio have moved on for free to Milan and Benevento respectively, while Duvan Zapata was sold outright to Atalanta after a solid loan spell at Sampdoria. However, no sale from the Serie A runner-up leaves a bigger void than midfield orchestrator Jorginho. Continue reading