Osimhen vs Bremer and Four Other Key Duels in Napoli-Juventus

On Friday night, all eyes will be on the Maradona Stadium as league leaders Napoli host the resurgent Juventus in an early yet crucial Scudetto showdown. Luckily for Luciano Spalletti and Massimiliano Allegri, both of their squads are oozing with talent all over the pitch, so it would interesting to see who will win the tactical battle. At the end of day, these razor-tight clashes are often decided by the smallest of details, and one player-duel could turn the tide in one team’s favor.

So let’s take a closer look at the five most interesting personal battles which should ensue this evening.

Lobotka vs Di Maria

We begin with a battle between two of the best technicians in Italian football. With Stanislav Lobotka operating as a deep-lying playmaker for the Partenopei and Angel Di Maria widely expected to start as an attacking midfielder in the Bianconeri’s 3-5-1-1 formation, a clash between the two is inevitable.

This season, the Slovakian has cemented himself as one of the best Registas in Serie A, if not the ultimate best. Dispossessing the 28-year-old is an incredibly difficult task, so Allegri will probably have some stern instructions on how to prevent the midfielder from receiving the ball, and it remains to be seen if Di Maria will be willing to do the dirty work.

Reminiscently, Lobotka will be entrusted in limiting the threat of the World Cup winner who will be the main instigator when it comes to building up the visitors’ plays.

Di Lorenzo vs Kostic

This will be a hard-fought battle between two wide players who enjoy darting forward and delivering crosses to the box without ever neglecting their defensive duties. Therefore, Giovanni Di Lorenzo and Filip Kostic will undoubtedly clash heads at both ends of the pitch and anywhere in-between.

The Serbian’s runs and crosses have proven to be a major source of danger for Juventus since the start of the campaign, so the Napoli captain will be eager to shut out the winger’s threat and perhaps peg him back with a few runs of his own.

Osimhen vs Bremer

So this is the duel that has been dominating the headlines in the Italian press. Who will prevail in the battle between the current Capocannoniere leader and the best Serie A defender from the previous campaign?

The former Torino centre-back has a daunting task ahead of him, so he’ll need all the support he can get from those around him, including his defensive partners and even Manuel Locatelli who will have to close down the lines to prevent the Nigerian bomber from lurking in the hole before storming to the penalty with his unparalleled ferocity.

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Kvaratskhelia vs Danilo

While Kvicha Kvaratskhelia is a cheat code of a winger, the Georgian hasn’t been at this best following his return from injury. Yet, granting the young sensation with enough space to penetrate from the left would be the Old Lady’s bane.

Fortunately for Allegri, he can always rely on the in-form Danilo who has slotted perfectly on the right side of the three-man defense. Nonetheless, the Juventus skipper will require some assistance, as it would be a grave mistake to leave him fending for himself against the breathtaking dribbles of the Napoli star.

Therefore, we can understand why the manager is leaning towards fielding Weston McKennie as a right wingback while leaving Federico Chiesa on the bench so he could be unleashed at the right timing.

Zambo Anguissa vs Rabiot

While this duel has been somewhat overlooked by the media, it might just be the most interesting one of all. The battle between André-Frank Zambo Anguissa and Adrien Rabiot will also have significant implications on the encounter itself, because whoever wins this crunching skirmish will allow his team to control the middle of the park.

This season, Rabiot has been on a spectacular form, especially on the big occasions. Before the winter break, he guided the Bianconeri towards two major victories over Inter and Lazio, while comfortably overcoming Nicolò Barella and Sergej Milinkovic-Savic in the process.

But this time around, the World Cup finalist will find his alter ego standing in front of him, as the two men are almost mirror images of one another: they both possess immense engines, enjoy making runs towards the box and aren’t afraid of getting their hands dirty.

So let’s keep a close eye on this particular duel.

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