Napoli vs Lazio Preview and Lineups – Serie A Round 14

Sunday’s Serie A action concludes at the Diego Armando Maradona Stadium with a blockbuster encounter between pacesetters Napoli and sixth-placed Lazio. With 11 points separating the sides ahead of the kick-off, this could be the traveling team’s last opportunity to keep their faint title hopes alive. 

It’s been an underwhelming past seven days for Napoli. After an action-packed 3-2 defeat at Inter last time out knocked them down from a 12-game unbeaten Serie A start, the Partenopei fell to an utterly frustrating 2-1 away loss to Spartak Moscow in midweek Europa League action.

Unlike their hosts, Lazio followed up last weekend’s 2-0 home reverse against Juventus with a scintillating 3-0 romping of Lokomotiv Moscow in Thursday’s Europa League fixture. The Biancocelesti will have to replicate their midweek showing if they are to defy their recent ‘Naples jinx’ this time around. 

Napoli vs Lazio Head-to-Head

Napoli put Lazio to the sword in their most recent Serie A encounter, picking up an overwhelming 5-2 victory in this exact fixture back in April. As a result, they have now won their last four top-flight meetings with this opposition on home turf, netting an average of 3.5 goals per match in that run. 

Home and away, the Partenopei have racked up 12 wins in their last 16 Serie A clashes against Lazio (D1, L3), as many triumphs as they had in their 34 top-flight H2Hs beforehand. 

Connoisseurs of action-packed football will look forward to this match-up, as seven of the last eight Serie A duels between these sides in Naples have featured three or more match goals. But after witnessing their side concede 2+ goals seven times in that eight-game stretch, the Biancocelesti faithful will harbor genuine concerns over Lazio’s prospects here.

Napoli Form Preview

Going toe-to-toe with Milan in a handsomely-looking Serie A title race since the get-go, Napoli couldn’t capitalize on their rivals’ 4-3 defeat at Fiorentina last time out, courtesy of their own slumping at Inter. Though that loss at the Giuseppe Meazza remains their solitary Serie A reverse this season (W10, D1, L1), the Partenopei take the field winless in their last two league outings (D1, L1). 

Since a shocking 2-1 loss to Spezia in January, Napoli have gone unbeaten in their last 17 Serie A home games in a row (W13, D4). This season alone, Luciano Spalletti’s men have won five of their six top-flight home matches (D1), returning a resounding +9 goal difference from that run. Rock-solid in defense, they’ve conceded a mere two league goals at home this term.

Indeed, Spalletti has based his team’s eye-catching Serie A form on an air-tight backline that has conceded a league-low seven goals to date. But though they are the only side yet to let in double digits in Italy’s top-flight this season, it’s worth noting that the three goals conceded at Inter last time out were as many as they allowed in their previous ten Serie A fixtures combined. 

Lazio Form Preview

The Biancocelesti have delivered a mixed bag of performances across the past couple of months, with none of their last nine Serie A matches featuring an identical outcome as the one prior (W4, D2, L3). Lazio’s form has differed depending on the surroundings, with Maurizio Sarri’s side developing a habit of collapsing on the road.

Since securing a come-from-behind 3-1 win over newly-promoted Empoli in their first Serie A travel of the season, Lazio have gone winless in their last five away league matches (D2, L3), conceding an average of 2.5 goals per game in the process. With each of their three defeats in that five-fixture period yielding a losing margin of 2+ goals, there are question marks over Lazio’s ability to pick themselves up after falling behind.

Following a 2-0 reverse at the hands of Juventus last weekend, the visitors stare at the prospect of losing back-to-back Serie A matches ‘to nil’ for the first time since January 2017. But after overseeing his side bag 2+ goals in their last three competitive road trips, Sarri will be keen to stage an upset on his emotional return to Naples. 

Napoli vs Lazio Predicted Lineups

Napoli (4-3-3): David Ospina; Mario Rui, Kalidou Koulibaly, Amir Rrahmani, Giovanni Di Lorenzo; Diego Demme, Piotr Zielinski, Fabian Ruiz; Hirving Lozano, Eljif Elmas, Andrea Petagna.

Lazio (4-3-3): Pepe Reina; Elseid Hysaj, Francesco Acerbi, Felipe, Manuel Lazzari; Danilo Cataldi, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, Luis Alberto; Felipe Anderson, Pedro, Ciro Immobile.