Napoli vs Torino Preview and Expected Lineups – Serie A Round 7

Napoli and Torino are set to trade tackles in an intriguing Serie A match-up at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona. It’s time to preview the game and take a look at the expected lineups.

Napoli staged a comeback to outscore Fiorentina 2-1 at Artemio Franchi on the eve of the international break to maintain their electric start to the season. Meanwhile, Torino’s 1-0 loss to cross-town rivals Juventus last time out deepened their ongoing problems with consistency as they hover in the bottom half of the table heading into this showdown.

Napoli vs Torino Head-to-Head

Napoli have suffered only one defeat across their last 18 Serie A encounters against Torino (W12, D5), courtesy of a 1-0 away loss in March 2015. Despite going unbeaten in 12 league H2Hs on the trot since that reverse, the Azzurri have drawn three of their last five league meetings with this opposition, netting under 1.5 goals three times in the process.

Furthermore, since succumbing to a 2-1 home loss in May 2005, the Partenopei have gone undefeated in their subsequent nine top-flight H2Hs in Naples (W5, D4). Given that five of the last seven Serie A duels between these two at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona featured 3+ overall goals, we could be in for a high-scoring affair here.

It is also worth noting that Napoli managed just a single clean sheet during that seven-game sequence, highlighting the potential for at least one Torino’s strike here.

Napoli Form Preview

It’s been an utterly impressive start to the season for Luciano Spalletti’s Napoli side. The Partenopei won each of their opening seven Serie A fixtures before the international break stood in their way, as they aim to equal the club’s best-ever eight-match start in Italy’s top-flight with another win here. 

Napoli’s hopes of making history are not unfounded. Since falling to a 2-1 loss to Spezia back in January, they have racked up an intimidating 14-game unbeaten Serie A streak on home turf (W11, D3). Bringing the 2020/21 season into the equation, the hosts have conceded one goal or less in each of their last six league home outings.

Besides scoring precisely twice in all three Serie A home matches this term, Luciano Spalletti’s men have attempted more shots on target (48) than any other team in the division. Napoli’s sensational showings in the early exchanges saw Spalletti cruise to a well-deserved ‘Coach of the Month’ award for September.

Seeking their first Serie A title since the Maradona-inspired side in the 1980s, Napoli need all three points to leapfrog Milan at the summit. The Rossoneri pulled off a stunning second-half comeback to beat Hellas Verona 3-2 on Saturday.

Player to watch: Victor Osimhen 

Victor Osimhen has hit the ground running in Serie A since picking up a straight red against Venezia on Matchday 1. The Nigerian striker has netted four goals in his last four top-flight appearances. 

Including his Europa League exploits, Osimhen has tallied seven goals across his last six competitive outings. Therefore, Torino will need to devote special attention to the 22-year-old.

Torino Form Preview

Torino looked on the verge of holding Juventus winless in the Derby della Molle last time out, but they walked off the pitch in pain after falling to a late 1-0 defeat. That loss brought the visitors’ four-match unbeaten Serie A streak to a halt (W2, D2), marking the first league fixture in which they failed to get on the scoresheet this season.

Despite scoring precisely once in each of their three Serie A away games this term, the Granata have lost just one of those encounters (W1, D1, L1). With five of Torino’s six league goals scored/conceded on the road this season coming beyond half-time, brace yourself for action-packed second-half football here.

However, after failing to score against Juventus last time out, Torino stare at the risk of drawing a blank in back-to-back Serie A outings for the first time since January. They will find some comfort in their scoring consistency on the road that spans back to April, with Ivan Juric’s men finding the net in all but one of their eight league trips in that stretch.

Though they go up against one of the most prolific Serie A sides, Torino may not be as easy to penetrate as it may look at first glance. The visitors have faced the fewest shots on target in Italy’s top-flight this season (18), showing they know how to defend with dignity.

Player to watch: Andrea Belotti

Andrea Belotti will return to the fold after overcoming a tendon injury that kept him on the sidelines across Torino’s last five Serie A fixtures. The 27-year-old striker came on as a late substitute in his side’s 2-1 home defeat to Atalanta in their Serie A curtain-raiser to find the net.

Belotti has been nothing short of exceptional against Napoli, netting a staggering 14 goals against this opposition so far.

Napoli vs Torino Predicted Line-ups

Napoli (4-3-3): Alex Meret; Mario Rui, Kalidou Koulibaly, Amir Rrahmani, Giovanni Di Lorenzo; Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa, Piotr Zielinski, Fabian Ruiz; Matteo Politano, Lorenzo Insigne, Victor Osimhen.

Torino (3-4-3): Vanja Milinkovic-Savic; Bremer, Ricardo Rodriguez, Koffi Djidji; Ola Aina, Sasa Lukic, Rolando Mandragora, Wilfried Stephane Singo; Karol Linetty, Andrea Belotti, Antonio Sanabria.