Napoli v Inter Milan– Preview, Predictions and Best Bets

Napoli host Inter Milan on Saturday in Serie A at Stadio Diego Armando Maradona. This is a massive match in the title race with one point separating these teams and also AC Milan. Luciano Spalletti’s team is back to their best in the league after a dip in form at one stage. Inter threw away a 1-0 lead to lose 2-1 to city rivals Milan last weekend but the champions have been very impressive this term.

Napoli Form

Napoli started this season on fire with 10 wins in their first 11 league matches. A major dip in form followed as they lost four of their next eight matches including a 1-0 home loss to Empoli and Spezia. After a 1-1 draw at Juventus, the Partenopei have strung together four wins on the bounce. They beat Sampdoria 1-0 at home before winning 2-0 at Bologna.

A 4-1 thrashing of Salernitana came next with four different goalscorers. Their most recent match saw the return of Victor Osimhen upfront. In a tough match at Venezia, he broke the deadlock on the hour mark before a very late sealer from Andrea Petagna.

Napoli Team News

The big question is whether top defender Kalidou Koulibaly will start this match. His Senegal side lifted the AFCON on Sunday and he returned to Italy on Wednesday so he should be rushed into the XI for such an important match.

Andre Zambo Anguissa is back from his own AFCON involvement to bolster the midfield. Speedy wingers Adam Ounas and Hirving Lozano are doubtful but could make the bench. Victor Osimhen will lead the line with two great impact sub-options in Dries Mertens and Andrea Petagna in reserve.

Napoli Motivation

Motivation at home for this huge match with the top spot up for grabs will be at its maximum. With the best defensive record in the league and Koulibaly usually starting, it won’t be easy for Inter to break down.

With excellent options on the bench, Spalletti will be able to chase a winner if the scores are level. A draw is no disaster but they will play to win.

Inter Milan Form

Inter are in strong form despite losing their last Serie A match, 2-1 at home in the derby to AC Milan. Before that, it was one defeat in 20 in all competitions. That derby loss ended a 14-match unbeaten run in Serie A and a 28-match run at home without losing.

Inzaghi has his side scoring freely (54 goals in 23 league matches). After an extra-time winner in the Coppa Italia after Empoli (3-2), Inter beat Venezia 2-1 at home thanks to Edin Dzeko’s last-minute winner. They bounced back from the AC Milan loss to beat Roma 2-0 at home in midweek in the cup as Edin Dzeko and Alexis Sanchez got the goals.

Inter Milan Team News

Inter will be without central defender Alessandro Bastoni after his red card against AC Milan. Danilo D’Ambrosio is most likely to take his place in the back three. Newly signed left wingback Robin Gosens is still injured, as is forward Joaquin Correa. Depth striker signing Felipe Caicedo is hoping to be fit and could debut as a sub.

Alexis Sanchez will hope to start after a superb strike in midweek but faith is expected to be shown in Lautaro Martinez despite a five-match goal drought in Serie A.

Inter Milan Motivation

Inter has a very busy schedule. They face Liverpool in the Champions League after this and also have a two-legged cup semi-final on the horizon. Their attention may be slightly spread with not 100% focused on this match.

In a tough away fixture, they may be quite satisfied with a draw to keep a cushion to Napoli even if AC Milan could jump into the top spot.

Key Stats

Napoli have lost just 1 of their last 15 home Serie A matches against Inter

Napoli have lost 3 of their last 5 home matches (Serie A)

Napoli have just 1 win in their last 9 Serie A matches against Inter

Inter have lost just 1 of their last 11 away matches in Serie A

Inter have scored a league-high 54 goals in Serie this term

Napoli have Serie A’s best defensive record (16 conceded)

Verdict

This is a very difficult match to call. Napoli’s usual formidable home record has instead seen three recent losses. Inter are hard to beat on the road. This match could end in a draw or be settled by the odd goal.

Best Bet: Both teams to score at 1.60
Value Bet: Draw at 3.35
Alternative Bet: Inter/Draw double chance + over 1.5 goals at 1.95
Scoreline Tip: Napoli 1-1 Inter Milan at 7.00

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Author: editor

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