Napoli vs Inter Preview and Lineups – Serie A Round 25

Diego Armando Maradona Stadium is the venue as runners-up Napoli and pacesetting Inter go head-to-head in a top-table Serie A six-pointer. Only one point separates the sides ahead of the kick-off, meaning the home side could leapfrog the reigning champions with a win.

Napoli have gone into overdrive since being held to a 1-1 draw at Juventus in their opening Serie A fixture of 2022, racking up four consecutive league triumphs, including a 2-0 win at newly-promoted Venezia last time out. Another success in this mouth-watering showdown could be a season-defining moment for the Partenopei.

In the meantime, Inter suffered a heartbreaking 2-1 loss to Milan in last weekend’s Derby della Madonnina, ending a run of 14 Serie A games without defeat (W11, D3). A game in hand on closes followers, Napoli and the Rossoneri, gives Simone Inzaghi’s men some breathing room, but they can ill-afford another slip-up against direct Scudetto rivals. 

Napoli vs Inter Head-to-Head

Inter came from behind to beat Napoli 3-2 in the reverse fixture at Giuseppe Meazza. They have now lost just one of their last nine Serie A encounters against the Partenopei (W5, D3), courtesy of a 4-1 thumping in May 2019 at this venue.

Despite their disappointing recent H2H record against the Nerazzurri, Napoli have been nothing short of exceptional against this opposition at home this century. Indeed, since the turn of the 21st millennium, they have gone unbeaten in 14 of their 15 league meetings with Inter (W9, D5).

But Inter’s poor record in Naples is unlikely to deter their efforts to harm the home side, having found the net in each of their last seven Serie A H2Hs. That is, in fact, their longest scoring run against the southern giants in the competition since 2000.

Napoli Preview

A noticeable upturn in form has witnessed Napoli go from winning just two out of nine Serie A matches (D3, L4) to putting together four straight league triumphs. Interestingly, three of those four victories yielded a clean sheet while each of the last three in a row saw the Partenopei keep a clean sheet. 

A strong defensive set-up has highlighted Luciano Spalletti’s early managerial reign in Campania, with Napoli conceding a league-low 16 goals this Serie A campaign. Alongside Juventus, Spalletti’s men remain one of just two teams in Italy’s top-flight yet to ship double digits at home this season, having conceded just eight goals from 12 home outings.

But their eye-catching defensive exploits have proved insufficient of late, with Napoli losing three of their last five Serie A home games (W2). Three of those five results (win/loss) came by an identical 1-0 scoreline, suggesting that entertainment could be relatively sparse here.

Inter Preview

After seeing their 14-game unbeaten streak in Serie A curtailed by Milan, Inter will be looking to avoid losing back-to-back league matches for the first time since March 2020. Yet, there is plenty of reason for optimism in the travelling camp, especially following their recent showings on the road. 

Since a 3-1 defeat at Lazio in mid-October, the Nerazzurri have strung together six Serie A away games without losing (W4, D2), keeping a clean sheet in each of the last four on the trot. Another shutout would see Inter go five successive away league fixtures without conceding for only the fifth time in the club’s history, last doing so in 1972.

Even if they concede first here, Inzaghi’s side should have enough character to bounce back. Inter have won all three Serie A away games after falling behind this season, with two of those turnarounds coming against current top-half sides, Hellas Verona and Fiorentina. 

Napoli vs Inter Predicted Lineups

Napoli (4-3-3): David Ospina; Mario Rui, Juan Jesus, Amir Rrahmani, Giovanni Di Lorenzo; Stanislav Lobotka, Piotr Zielinski, Fabian Ruiz; Lorenzo Insigne, Matteo Politano, Victor Osimhen.

Inter (3-5-2): Samir Handanovic; Stefan de Vrij, Danilo D’Ambrosio, Milan Skriniar; Denzl Dumfries, Ivan Perisic, Marcelo Brozovic, Nicolo Barella, Hakan Calhanoglu; Lautaro Martinez, Edin Dzeko.