Union Berlin vs Napoli Preview and Lineups – UCL Round 3

The Partenopei head to the German capital on Tuesday night with Union Berlin vs Napoli on show in Group C Champions League action. Die Eisernen are on a torrid run of form as they prepare to host the Italian champions at Olympiastadion on the back of eight straight defeats.

Rudi Garcia’s Napoli have been extremely inconsistent this term and have won just one of their last three competitive matches. They will be looking to return to winning ways in Europe having lost 3-2 at home to Real Madrid to begin the month.

Having lost their maiden two Champions League matches in their history, Union Berlin will be dreaming of picking up their first points here. Nevertheless, it will be an extremely difficult task up against a Napoli side who are hoping to qualify for the knockouts in their third successive attempt. It’s time to take a look at our Union Berlin vs Napoli preview.

Union Berlin Preview

Urs Fischer has led a tremendous turnaround for Union over the past half a decade. Having been promoted from Bundesliga 2. in 2019, it has been nothing but success for the capital club. They even secured a spot in the Champions League for the first time in their history after Fischer guided Union Berlin to a fourth-placed finish last term.

However, they have been brought back to reality this season. Despite winning their first two league games of the campaign, Union Berlin have lost all eight matches across all competitions since. That currently leaves them down in the bottom half of the Bundesliga.

Nevertheless, there is still plenty of time left for them to get their season back on track. They will have to improve in defense, though, since Union have conceded a total of 10 goals over their past three outings and are yet to keep a single clean sheet so far this season.

It was almost a dream start for Die Eisernen in their Champions League debut against Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu. However, a Jude Bellingham goal right at the death stopped Union Berlin from picking up their first-ever Champions League points. It would be more late heartbreak for the German side in Round 2 as they lost 3-2 at home to Braga after conceding yet another injury-time goal.

One To Watch: Kevin Behrens

Although Union Berlin have been woeful this term, Kevin Behrens has still managed to score four goals in just eight Bundesliga matches this term. However, they did come in their opening two games and the 32-year-old has failed to hit the back of the net in any of his eight appearances since. Behrens will be looking to score his first Champions League goal of his career here.

Napoli Preview

It was always going to be difficult for Napoli to replicate last season’s success. Departures in the form of head coach Luciano Spalletti and key central defender Kim Min-jae have been felt hard but pressure is already mounting on new boss Garcia. However, they do enter this one on the back of a 3-1 victory away to Verona on Saturday.

Napoli had lost their two matches prior to the weekend’s triumph. That saw them suffer a 3-2 defeat against Real Madrid before losing 3-1 versus Fiorentina, both at Stadio Diego Maradona. Issues with consistency currently leave the Azzurri outside the top-four in Serie A. Napoli’s defeats have only come at home so far this season and so another road trip here could bode well for them. They have dropped points in just two away games this term, winning four.

With Los Blancos expected to defeat Braga in the other Group C match this week, a win for Napoli would see them take the advantage in securing qualification. At the moment, though, the Partenopei are level on points with the Portuguese outfit.

In light of Union Berlin’s recent struggles, Tuesday’s match is the perfect opportunity for Napoli to step up and assert their authority on the group. They are yet to win three in a row yet this term and have failed to pick up any sort of momentum thus far. However, a win here would certainly put them on the right path.

One To Watch: Kvicha Kvaratskhelia 

The Georgian winger appears to have overcome his issues in front of goal in 2023 and his brace at the weekend helped Napoli record the win. Kvicha Kvaratskhelia scored in back-to-back games for his country over the recent international break so he should be full of confidence once more ahead of this one.


This is the first competitive meeting between the two sides throughout their history.

Union Berlin vs Napoli Potential Lineups & Team News

Union Berlin (3-5-2): Frederik Ronnow; Danilho Doekhi, Leonardo Bonucci, Diogo Leite; Christopher Trimmel, Lucas Tousart, Rani Khedira, Alex Kral, Robin Gosens; Kevin Behrens, Sheraldo Becker

Holding midfielder Rani Khedira made his return at the weekend after recovering from injury so he will likely start once more for the home side. However, Josip Juranovic and Jerome Roussillon have both been ruled out. Robin Gosens is in doubt since he has been training individually. He is expected to play but Diogo Leite is an option if needed.

The likes of Laurenz Dehl, Mikkel Kaufmann, Andras Schafer and Alexander Schwolow are all expected to remain on the sidelines.

Napoli (4-3-3): Alex Meret; Giovanni Di Lorenzo, Natan, Amir Rrahmani, Mario Rui; Jens Cajuste, Stanislav Lobotka, Piotr Zielinski; Matteo Politano, Giacomo Raspadori, Kvicha Kvaratskhelia

Eljif Elmas and Mathias Olivera have both recovered from their respective injuries and will be involved on Tuesday. However, the visitors will be dealing with a couple of key injuries to Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa and Victor Osimhen who both remain out due to injury. Juan Jesus is also unavailable.

Union Berlin vs Napoli Prediction

The hosts’ leaky defense should mean that the in-form Kvaratskhelia could thrive in spite of Osimhen’s absence. Of course, Napoli have not been exactly electric themselves but Union Berlin will be devoid of much confidence. The visitors have been solid away from home so far this season too so they will be expected to win.

Union Berlin 1-3 Napoli