Napoli vs. Sampdoria Preview: Stronger Napoli Returns On The Pitch

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Updated: January 3, 2014
Napoli-Rafael Benitez

Online betting top pick, Napoli diverts its focus to the title race. Losing their grip on the top spot has been disappointing to the rest of the Partenopei. Along with this is the injury of Marik Hamsik. Nevertheless, these disappointments shall be their motivation to dominate the league again.

 

Match Date: 06 January 2014 (local time)
Venue: Stadio San Paolo
 
Team Form

Napoli

A whirlwind of success and defeat best describes Napoli’s performance during the first half of the season. For quite a while, they have been the center of attention after dominating the boards and making an impression in the Champions League.

 

It was a strong start and much to the amazement of many, a sudden turn of tides saw the Partenopei lagging behind incumbent champ, Juventus and the Champions League campaign and the ambition to be hailed as the King of European football ended in a disappointing exit.

 

Napoli’s defence struggles. Formation adjustments, while beneficial in the attacking part, has not been efficient in protecting the ball and keeping opponents at bay. Such can be attributed to wingback-fullback transition of the club’s wingers i.e Christian Maggio and the like. This shift does not seem to fit into the player’s attacking penchant and therefore, presents opportunities for opponents.

 

Nevertheless, Napoli remains a strong contender and certainly, the second half of their season promises to be a big blast. Such optimism is evident with the return of Marik Hamsik, who has been sidelined for quite some time. His return and the presence of Jose Callejon, who has been clinical and prolific in his appearances, present an impending and massive pitch attack, which bring chills to their known opponents. This does not immediately guarantee their return for the silverware bid. But one thing is certain as the second half begins—the Partenopei is back with a vengeance.
 

 Napoli-Rafael Benitez

 

Sampdoria

Sampdoria is still a long shot from the relegation zone. They currently occupy the 14th spot of the table and apparently, their survival is hardly an issue. But the arrival of Sinisa Mihajlovic presented a different message. This early, the club is already facilitating the necessary approaches to stay in the to-flight league. Their performance under Delio Rossi was short of being spectacular and if not addressed, this could push them at the rock bottom part of the table.

 

Mihajlovic’s change, to be more specific, the return to the 4-man defence helped them keep the ball more often and sparked the player’s creativity to spot more scoring opportunities. The results are greatly manifested in their last six (6) games where they were undefeated in five (5) of them.

 

With the start of a new chapter, Sampdoria is expected to do well in the transfer market. Their quest for a reliable striker is necessary to go well with their improving defence. At the end of the day, the scores, still, determine the match winner and without a striker at hand, the relegation zone might be the club’s next destination.

 

Sampdoria are the evident minnows in their upcoming match. Yet, while it is true, the Partenopei cannot take things lightly as they too, have had shortcomings and loopholes when dealing with mid-table clubs.

 

Football betting tip: Napoli

Certainly, Rafael Benitez is keen on returning to their winning ways. The slip has been too frustrating for a club that has created a reputation of becoming the best of Serie A.

 

 

 

Image Source: The Gazette