Stadio San Paolo, Napoli, Italy
Napoli moved four points clear at the top of Serie A after defeating Milan 2-1 at the Stadio San Paolo.
Lorenzo Insigne’s controversial first-half goal opened the scoring for Maurizio Sarri’s men before substitute Piotr Zieliński’s second-half strike doubled the lead. Alessio Romagnoli’s superb late volley reduced the deficit for Vincenzo Montella’s side, but it wasn’t enough as the Neapolitans held-on to extend their unbeaten run in the league to 25 matches.
The hosts started well and had a good chance to take the lead in the 12th minute when Insigne’s lofted-pass found José Callejón, but the Spaniard’s header from a tight-angle was smothered away by Gianluigi Donnarumma.
In the 26th minute the visitors went close when Suso cut-inside to fire an effort at-goal that Pepe Reina saved well at his near-post.
Seven minutes later the Neapolitans controversially went in front when Insigne slotted home past Donnarumma after being sent through on-goal by Jorginho. The linesman had initially wrongly ruled the goal out for offside, but after consulting with the Video Assistant Refereeing system, the referee overturned the decision correctly.
In the first of three additional minutes at the end of the first-half, Napoli very nearly doubled their lead when a kick-out from Reina found Insigne, who surged forward before firing an effort against the post, although the flag had gone up for offside.
On the stroke of half-time the Ciucciarelli went close to a second goal when Insigne cut-inside to curl an effort that looked destined to find the top-corner, but Donnarumma reacted well to terrifically palm the effort away.
The Azzurris started the second-half in the ascendancy and should have doubled their lead, two minutes into the restart, when Dries Mertens was sent through on-goal by Insigne, but his effort was smothered away by Donnarumma, who managed to get a strong right-hand to the strike.
In the 73rd minute the hosts doubled their lead when Mertens sent Zieliński through on-goal and the substitute fired home through the legs of Donnrumma from a tight-angle.
Three minutes later the Rossoneri went close to reducing the deficit when Giacomo Bonaventura’s speculative-strike from outside the area was tipped over the bar by Reina.
Three minutes later Milan had a good opportunity to pull a goal back when Nikola Kalinić met a Franck Kessié cross with a header, but his effort was tame and Reina made a straightforward save.
In the first of four additional minutes the visitors reduced the deficit when a headed-clearance from Raúl Albiol fell to Romagnoli, who brilliantly volleyed home from outside the area.
The result meant that Napoli moved onto 35 points, four points clear at the top of the league while Milan remained seventh on 19 points. The victory also meant Napoli went 25 matches unbeaten in the league.