Napoli vs Verona 1-1: Nine-Man Mastini Hold Partenopei

Verona’s impressive performances against top teams continued as they held Napoli to a 1-1 draw at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona today. 

Luciano Spalletti’s side entered the game as the favorites to win it but the visitors put in a spirited performance right from the beginning. Verona opened the scoring in the 13th minute thanks to their star-striker Giovanni Simeone, who netted his ninth Serie A goal.

Napoli leveled thanks to Giovanni di Lorenzo, who found the net after receiving a pass from Fabian Ruiz.

In the second half, Verona had a glorious opportunity to go ahead through Antonin Barak but his shot was not strong enough to trouble David Ospina. During the end of the match, the Mastini had two players sent off in Daniel Bessa and Nikola Kalinic.

However, Napoli were unable to find a winner and had to settle for a point. While Verona did put up a tough fight, the Azzurri might ponder on some of their missed opportunities, particularly Osimhen’s miss in the first half. Nonetheless, Spalletti’s side maintain their unbeaten record in the Serie A.

Starting XIs: Juan Jesus Makes First Start in Two Years, Verona Make One Change

Napoli were without star defender Kalidou Koulibaly who was suspended after being sent off against Salernitana last weekend. Thus, Juan Jesus got his first Serie A start since August 2019, partnering Amir Rrahmani at the heart of the defense. Mario Rui was back in the starting XI at his usual left-back position.

Fabian Ruiz partnered Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa in central midfield, replacing Diego Demme while Matteo Politano and Lorenzo Insigne were back in the lineup. Up front, Victor Osimhen replaced Andrea Petagna.

Tudor made just one change from Verona’s 2-1 win over Juventus with Federico Ceccherini replacing Darko Lazovic.

Simeone Strikes Early but Di Lorenzo Equalizes

Verona were off to a great start with Caprari testing Ospina in the first few minutes. Shortly after, Barak did well to get past Rui and passed to Simeone, who was there to tuck the ball into the back of the net to give Verona the lead.

Napoli were eager to bounce back and got it thanks to Di Lorenzo, who netted his first goal of the season. The Partenopei had a glorious chance to take the lead through Osimhen but his left-footed shot clipped the far post. Both sides attempted to score but were unable to do so during the remainder of the first half.

Verona Manage to See off Napoli Despite Being Down to Nine

In the second half, the visitors had an opportunity to take the lead through Barak but the Slovak’s shot did not have enough power to trouble Ospina. Both sides were eager to find the net but were unable to get the end-product.

Spalletti brought on some fresh legs to help Napoli clinch the lead but the Verona backline was rigid enough to foil them. Towards the end, the Mastini had substitutes Bessa and Kalinic sent off with the duo receiving two yellow cards each.

Napoli had one last throw of the dice when they were awarded a free-kick in a promising area. Dries Mertens took it well but Lorenzo Montipò made a fantastic save to deny him. Verona eventually managed to take a point from Naples after a frankly impressive display.

Napoli are still unbeaten in the league but could drop to second place in the table provided Milan beat Inter tonight.

What’s Next for Napoli and Verona

Napoli have a very tough fixture after the international break as they travel to Milan for a meeting against reigning champions Inter. Verona have a relatively easier clash as they host Empoli, who are just below them in the league table.



November 7, 2021 – Seria A 2021-2022 Matchday 12

SCORERS: 13′ Simeone (V), 18′ Di Lorenzo (N)

NAPOLI (4-2-3-1): Ospina, Di Lorenzo, Rrahmani, Juan, Rui, Anguissa (86′ Mertens), Ruiz, Politano (62′ Lozano), Zielinski (62′ Elmas), Insigne (86′ Ounas), Osimhen (90+1′ Petagna) (Meret, Demme, Marfella, Zanoli, Lobotka); Coach: Spalletti
VERONA (3-4-2-1): Montipo, Gunter (84′ Magnani), Ceccherini, Casale, Faraoni, Tameze, Veloso, Dawidowicz, Barak (75′ Bessa), Caprari (84′ Kalinic), Simeone (75′ Lasagna) (Pandur, Cetin, Cancellieri, Ruegg, Berardi, Sutalo, Ragusa, Hongla); Coach: Tudor

REFEREE: Mr. Ayroldi from Molfetta
NOTES: Yellow Cards: Rrahmani (N), Barak (V), Veloso (V), Dawidowicz (V), Bessa (V, red), Kalinic (V, red), Osimhen (N) ; Added Time: 1st Half 0′, 2nd Half 6′