Napoli vs Inter Milan
Stadio Diego Armando Maradona sets the stage for a mouth-watering Serie A showdown between Napoli and Inter Milan.
Empoli’s stunning 1-0 win at this venue on the stroke of November’s international break spelled the end of Rudi Garcia’s tenure at Napoli, extending the reigning champions’ disastrous winless home streak to five matches in all competitions (D2, L3). New manager Walter Mazzarri enjoyed a flying start to his second stint in southern Italy as ‘I Partenopei’ scored either side of halftime to win 2-1 at Atalanta last weekend and stay three points clear of fifth-placed Roma in fourth. However, Napoli come into proceedings on the back of a 4-2 loss at Real Madrid that left their hopes of making it out of the Champions League group stages in doubt, casting doubt on their bid to uphold an eye-catching 17-game home form against visiting Inter (W10, D6, L1).
On the other hand, Inter Milan pulled off an insane second-half comeback in midweek Champions League action, hauling back a 3-0 HT deficit to hold Benfica to an enthralling 3-3 draw in Lisbon. After six consecutive wins between the last two international breaks, Simone Inzaghi’s men have drawn back-to-back matches, sharing the spoils with Juventus in a 1-1 stalemate in Turin before doing the unthinkable in Portugal. With ‘I Bianconeri’ winning at Monza, Inter must beat Napoli to return to the top of the Serie A standings. Unbeaten in their last 11 competitive games (W8, D3), ‘I Nerazzurri’ ought to be confident in Naples, especially considering they’d won their first five away league games before the abovementioned Derby d’Italia draw. That’s not to mention they’ve averaged 2.4 goals per game across their last 11 Serie A travels (W9, D1, L1).