NEWS
Wednesday January 13 2021
Line-ups: Napoli v Empoli

Kalidou Koulibaly is back in the Napoli starting XI for the Coppa Italia Round of 16 against Empoli, who have three players ruled out by COVID.

It kicks off at 16.45 GMT at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona.

Gennaro Gattuso doesn’t have much room when it comes to squad rotation, as his squad remains rather limited.

Koulibaly returns to the starting XI after his muscular injury, as Kostas Manolas is out of action, so Amir Rrahmani gets the nod again after his disastrous debut against Udinese.

Lorenzo Insigne, Tiemoue Bakayoko and Fabian Ruiz are rested.

Dries Mertens is back on the bench for the first time since his injury against Inter in December, but Victor Osimhen is still sidelined.

Serie B side Empoli are already an outlier at this stage of the Coppa Italia and their chances were damaged further this afternoon when it emerged the local health authority (ASL) had ordered coach Alessio Dionisi, a member of staff and three players in isolation after they came into contact with someone who had COVID-19.

The players are Leonardo Mancuso, Roberto Pirrello and Szymon Zurkowski.

They have not tested positive, but were on a flight on January 4 from Lampedusa to Bologna in close contact with someone who does now have COVID-19.

They have all had three swabs since then, all coming back negative, but the Naples ASL continues to be far stricter on ordering self-isolation for players than any other authority in Italy.

Napoli: Meret; Di Lorenzo, Rrahmani, Koulibaly, Ghoulam; Demme, Lobotka; Politano, Elmas, Lozano; Petagna

Empoli: Furlan, Viti, Casale, Terzi, Zappella; Ricci, Damiani, Haas; Bajrami; Matos, Olivieri

Ref: Giua