The Partenopei currently sit seven points clear at the top of the Serie A table heading into matchday 18 of Serie A, placing themselves in a strong position to win their first Scudetto in over three decades.After starting the year with their first loss of the season in domestic circuit, Napoli bounced back from their defeat to Inter Milan with a 2-0 victory at Sampdoria in their most recent league fixture.
Serie A top-scorer Victor Osimhen opened the scoring early in the contest, before Eljif Elmas clinched all three points from the penalty spot late in the second half.
Luciano Spalletti’s side now face another stern test of their title credentials as they host a resurgent Juventus in Friday night’s highly anticipated Serie A clash.
Juventus have recovered admirably after their sluggish start to the season, and a win in Campania would cut the gap to four points, putting title-favourites Napoli under even more pressure.
Napoli’s outstanding season has been helped by their imperious home form, as they have yet to taste defeat in front of their fans. But, the Bianconeri will still fancy their chances of getting a result out of this one, as they are riding high on positive momentum after winning their eighth straight league match with a 1-0 win over Udinese last time out.
Napoli have the best attack in the Italian top-flight, having found the back of the net 39 times so far this season, while Juventus have the meanest defence in the league, conceding just 7 league goals as of yet. So, it’s like a confrontation between an unstoppable force and an immovable object. It will be fascinating to watch who triumphs in this war.
Napoli and Juventus’ upcoming fixtures
Following their crucial encounter with Juve, the Partenopei will host beleaguered Cremonese in the Coppa Italia round of 16 before continuing their Scudetto march with a trip to minnows Salernitana on 21st January.
The Old Lady of Turin, meanwhile, will welcome Monza in the last 16 of the Italian cup. They will return to league action with a home game against Gian Piero Gasperrini’s Atalanta in a tricky-looking fixture, followed by another league encounter against Monza at the Allianz Stadium to cap off the month of January.
Napoli vs Juventus confirmed lineups
Napoli XI (4-3-3): Meret; Di Lorenzo; Kim Min-Jae, Rrahmani, Rui; Zambo-Anguissa, Lobotka, Zielinski; Politano, Osimhen, Kvaratskhelia
Juventus XI (3-4-3): Szczesny; Danilo, Bremer, Sandro; McKennie, Rabiot, Locatelli, Kostic; Chiesa, Milik, Di Maria