Napoli face struggling Bologna in the matchday 34 of the Italian Serie A hoping to get a win to consolidate their Champions League qualification spot for next season.
Napoli were comprehensively beaten by Inter Milan on Saturday, but they still hold on to the second place in the league table. They still have a chance to challenge Juve for the league title, but in reality 9 points gap with 5 matches to go is a mission impossible.
At the same time, Napoli are also 9 points above the fourth placed Inter and there is absolutely no threat to their Champions League qualification chances and have little pressure to muscle out results in the closing stages of the season.
Bologna don’t like winning matches these days are coming on the back of a 1-0 home defeat to a lowly Torino. They haven’t won in any of their last eight matches, but a 13 the position in the league table with 37 points has already insured their stay in Serie A beyond the current season.
- Napoli’s 2-0 loss to Inter is their second defeat in three matches. The match was also the first in 8 outings that Napoli had failed to find the back of the net.
- Napoli are unbeaten at home this season and the only team in Serie A with the record after winning in 13 and drawing 3 of their 16 games so far.
- Napoli have scored 3 goals each in their last three home games.
- Bologna have lost 4 of their last 5 matches and are without a win in their last 8 Serie A games. Their overall record in the last 8 matches read 4 defeats and 4 draws.
- Ten out of last Bologna’s last 11 matches saw under 2.5 goals. They have failed to score in 7 of those matches.
Napoli: Team News
Gonzalo Higuain has his ban reduced to three games and will complete it by sitting out of the match against Bologna.
Napoli head-coach Maurizio Sarri is missing no other players through injury or suspension and is likely to stick with the starting line-up he used Inter in the weekend.
Napoli: Predicted Line-up (4-3-3)
Ghoulam, Koulibaly, Albiol, Hysaj
Allan, Hamsik, Jorginho
Insigne, Callejon, Gabbiadini.
Bologna: Team News
Bologna head-coach Roberto Donadoni will be without two key players – Mattia Destro and Daniele Gastaldello, who are sidelined through injuries.
Godfred Donsah and Daniele Gastaldello are also out injured, while Domenico Maietta, Anthony Mounier and Saphir Taider are struggling for fitness.
Bologna: Predicted Line-up (4-3-3)
Constant, Maietta, Rossettini, Oikonomou
Brienza, Diawara, Taider
Giaccherini, Floccari, Rizzo.
Napoli vs Bologna: Head-to-Head Stats
- Bologna are unbeaten in the last two meetings with Napoli. However, both games were played at Bologna, they won 3-2 in December 2015 and drawn 2-2 in January 2014.
- Their head-to-head record in the last 5 league meetings between Napoli and Bologna read 2 wins each for both sides and a draw.
- Napoli’s home record against Bologna in the last 5 games in the Seie A reads 3 wins, 1 draw and 1 defeat.
Napoli vs Bologna: Prediction
Napoli are desperate to bounce back with a win after the disappointing showdown at San Siro on Saturday. There won’t be a better place to do it rather than at their home ground, where they are unbeaten in the 16 matches in Serie A so far.
Bologna haven’t won in their last 8 matches and lost 4 of their 5 and will be low on confidence. They have done a better job in the early half of the season and are lucky to find themselves at a comfortable distance from the relegation zone.
There are absolutely no pressure on either teams, but judging on the team forms, Napoli are strong favourites to win this one on Tuesday. And I believe they will achieve this by a comfortable 3-1 margin.