Napoli has now lost a total of five points at home. The first two points lost were a tie with Sassuolo. On Saturday, Napoli dropped three points to Parma with a 1-0 loss. Not only did Napoli loose on the scoreboard, however they loss Marek Hamsik for the Champions League match versus Borussia Dortmund.
- Antonio Cassano: A revelation this year at Parma, Cassano has been playing very well that some media outlets have been adding his name to the conversation of representing Italy in Brazil at the World Cup. Cassano scored the only goal of the match. Granted Naploli defense let him run into a prime position to strike the ball pass Pepe Reina. However, throughout the match, Cassano was providing great passes into the box, however Parma strikers lacked finish touch.
- Valon Behrami: As Napoli fans expect every game, Behrami did his job and did it well. He works tirelessly in the midfield every match he plays. He tackles hard, recovers balls and duels in the air.
- Honorable Mentions: Lorenzo Insigne, Antonio Mirante
- Miguel Britos: Unfortunately, Britos was back in the line-up and he was up to his usual self again. Bad passes, undecisive and bad defending. Actually, his bad defending is the reason Cassano had his golden opportunity to score. Britos kept running backwards instead of stepping up on Cassano. Hopefully, Napoli sees Frederico Fernandez vs Borussia and going forward.
- Jose Callejon: He was not his usual self from the start of the game. Perhaps the international break did more harm to him than good seeing Callejon was on form before the break. Throughout the game he misplayed balls delivered to him, gave away balls and lacked any offensive threat.
- Napoli Finish: Once again Napoli lacked conviction at getting ball past the keeper. Higuain had a great chance after “dancing” in the box around a defender but Mirante denied him. Insigne had a chance to finally put his goal drought in Serie A to an end, however his curling effort was off target.
- Result: As mentioned, losing at home versus a “weaker” side at home is not ideal when chasing the scudetto. Napoli need to now make up ground on both Juventus and Roma by at least winning their home match versus both those teams.
- Pitch/Weather: The pitch was not in its greatest condition due to heavy rainfall and some hail prior to the match. Not to find excuses, however this may of hampered Napoli to make quick transition, considering they stole the ball often from Parma.
- Marek Hamsik injury: Rafa Benitez had to sub on Hamsik because the starting VI did not generate a goal. Unfortunately, Hamsik only played nine minutes and needed to be subbed off due to injuring his foot.
Napoli need to turn the page quickly on this match and now turn their attention on obtaining at minimum a draw to guarantee qualification for the Round of 16.
On a side note, I would like to thank “Last Word on Sports” for providing me a platform to blog about Napoli, which you can read here: http://lastwordonsports.com/author/joey/. Going forward, I have joined a team solely focused on Italian Football