NEWS
Thursday February 9 2012
Napoli cling to away goal in Siena

Siena managed to beat Napoli 2-1 in the Coppa Italia semi-final first leg, but rue a late own goal that gives the Partenopei a great chance of qualifying.

This was an historic occasion for Robur, who had never reached the semi-finals of this competition before. The home side were without Mattia Destro, Emanuele Calaiò, Roberto Vitiello and Luca Rossettini, while Paolo Grossi and Francesco Parravicini were suspended. Goran Pandev replaced Ezequiel Lavezzi in the Napoli trident.

Simone Farelli flew to parry an Edinson Cavani effort at the near post, then palmed Walter Gargano’s strike off the line from the resulting corner. Pandev was booked for an elbow on Belmonte when they both jumped for the ball. Reginaldo’s strike was charged down and Hugo Campagnaro tripped Alessandro Gazzi on the edge of the box as he tried to get on the loose ball. Gaetano D’Agostino’s free kick was deflected wide.

Farelli beat away another Pandev attempt, then smothered at the Macedonian’s feet as a lucky deflection set him up from eight yards. Pandev and Cavani combined on the counter-attack, but Marek Hamsik’s first touch let him down.

For all Napoli’s efforts, it was Siena who broke the deadlock just before half-time. Daniele Mannini flicked on from the left to send Reginaldo clear and the Brazilian turned on the turbo, bursting past Campagnaro and goalkeeper De Sanctis to waltz into an empty net.

Napoli should’ve scored on the stroke of half-time when Hamsik rolled across for Cavani, but not only did he fire straight at Farelli from point-blank range, he had also strayed offside.

After the restart Cavani’s header was weak when Christian Maggio was in a better position right behind him. Mannini went closer against his former club, pouncing on a poor Salvatore Aronica clearance to half-volley just over the bar.

Moments later, Mannini had another great scoring opportunity, but Campagnaro threw himself at the shot with a decisive block from seven yards. Ezequiel Lavezzi came off the bench and immediately flashed an angled drive just past the far post.

Siena doubled their lead in this two-legged tie, as the Napoli defence was torn apart. Rossi’s first cross was charged down, but he rolled it back across the face of goal for D’Agostino to side-foot powerfully under the bar from nine yards.

Maggio nodded a Hamsik free kick well off target, while Lavezzi was considerably closer with a curling set play just past the near top corner of the net.

Napoli thought they had scored on 79 minutes when Farelli parried Lavezzi’s strike on to the head of Cavani, but an acrobatic goalline clearance from Belmonte prevented the goal. The Partenopei then had penalty appeals for a Matteo Contini handling offence, but the referee felt there was an earlier foul on the defender.

The visitors were incredibly unlucky, as a corner found Cavani only for his effort to crack against the woodwork. Siena immediately went on the counter and Marcelo Larrondo fell under a challenge from Edu Vargas, but the referee did not give a foul or a red card.

When Napoli did get on the scoresheet a few minutes from time, it was thanks to a Siena player. Lavezzi’s low cross was accidentally deflected into his own net by Emanuele Pesoli, anticipating Farelli from six yards.

Walter Mazzarri’s men thought they’d equalised at the 95th minute, but Campagnaro’s header thumped the underside of the bar and bounced back out!

Siena 2-1 Napoli

Scorers: Reginaldo 42 (S), D’Agostino 66 (S), Pesoli og 86 (N)

Siena:Farelli; Belmonte, Pesoli, Contini; Angelo, Gazzi, D’Agostino, Rossi; Mannini (Brienza 62), Reginaldo (Giorgi 69); Bogdani (Larrondo 51)

Napoli:De Sanctis; Campagnaro, Cannavaro, Aronica (Lavezzi 57); Maggio, Gargano, Dzemaili (Inler 74), Zuniga; Hamsik, Pandev (Vargas 71); Cavani

Ref: De Marco

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