Napoli has an onerous task this week in the Europa League last 32 to overturn a goal deficit as they host overachievers Granada. The match schedules for Thursday at the Stadio Maradona, with kickoff at 8:55 pm.
Granada continues to make an impressive debut in their continental campaign and is now intent on keeping the job finished to claim a place in Friday’s last-16 draw.
On the other hand, Napoli managed to extend their unbeaten run to seven group stage matches before the turn of the year; they have now three losses outside Italy in the Europa knockout stage. The side managed to phase over an ever-improving Granada side on Thursday night at Andalusia.
Given the two-goal deficit, the Partenopei could name only 12 senior outfield players. The side has another mountain to climb in their Serie A title race with matches coming against Juventus and Atalanta.
Napoli’s strong defensive record that was the second-best in the league fell for a 4-2 thrashing last weekend to raise more questions on Gatusso’s side. It seems their victory over Juventus was a quiet time before the waves come in.
The Spanish sports press were full of praise for 23-year-old midfielder Yangel Herrera after opening the scoring encounter. Granada has far surpassed any expectations from their side, winning the promotion to top flight in their first campaign while qualifying for Europe with a seventh top finish.
Napoli vs Granada Head to Head
Both sides have only one match against each other, with Granada taking home the only win. Here is a look at their previous encounters:
Atalanta 4-2 Napoli
Granada 2-0 Napoli
Napoli 1-0 Juventus
Atalanta 3-1 Napoli
Genoa 2-1 Napoli
Huesca 3-2 Granada
Granada 2-0 Napoli
Granada 1-2 Atletico Madrid
Levante 2-2 Granada
Granada 3-5 Barcelona
Napoli Team News
Napoli forward Victor Osimhen spent a night in hospital following an alarming collapse during their clash with Atalanta and remains unavailable. Most first-choice options include Dries Mertens, Diego Demme, Elsied Hysaj, Andrea Petagna, David Ospina and Kostas Manolas. Star man Harvin Lozano is likely to feature this week after missing out on their midweek clash.
Granada Team News
Yangel Herrera and Maxime Gonalos are likely to maintain their positions in the starting XI. Defender German Sanchez was sent off during their disappointing defeat to Huesca.
Prediction and Odds
The only hope for Napoli in overturning their deficit will be to summon a spirit shown against Juventus.
Both Teams to Score
Goals Over 2.5