European LeagueA Clinical Zielinski and a cheap penalty for 1-1. Barcelona and Napoli kept each other on balance last night, yes, the Europa League. The Italians were particularly pleased with that.
Aubameyang got his first starting point with the home team. And although almost all the Italian media predicted that “9 Liar” would start, Dries Mertens had to settle for a place on the bench in Naples. Victor Osimhen, as you remember him from Charleroi, is ready to play and preferred by coach Spalletti.
Barcelona was again Barcelona. Old fashioned dominant. 65 percent of possession, most scoring chances, corner kicks, clean passes. It just lacked efficiency. In half an hour, Goldcrest Ferran Torres had a chance, but only in front of the goal he pushed the ball so diagonally in front of him that he was not able to frame his shot. It wouldn’t be the Spain international’s last chance.
This is what Napoli did best. Peter Zelensky in particular pulled the trigger. Ter Stegen was defeated twice, 0-1 for Napoli. The chances of scoring for the southern Italian players can be counted on the one hand, but they were ahead.
Barcelona’s goal was just as well deserved as it was contested. Just before the hour passed, Jesus touched the ball with his hand in his sixteenth hand, the VAR ruled. Pedri with 1-1. Napoli cracked on all sides, but once again Ferran Torres missed the winning goal – even twice – while a bicycle kick from superb substitute Luc de Jong flew away. What a goal it would have been…
In Naples, Mertens was allowed to come ten minutes before the end, his 107th match in Europe. Our compatriot got one chance, not a simple one, but his submission was very pivotal. It is curious whether he will get a starting position next week, and whether Barcelona, read: Ferran Torres, will finish the chances.
Video: A year and a half ago, Barcelona and Napoli met in the Champions League
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