SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 37 - 13 May 2018 (19.45 UK)
Sampdoria 0 - 2 Napoli
Milik 72 (N), Albiol 80 (N)
Stadio Luigi Ferraris

Arkadiusz Milik and Raul Albiol gave Napoli the victory at Marassi, but it wasn’t enough for the title, as Juventus got the point at Roma.

The Partenopei’s Scudetto hopes had virtually evaporated, but they were still trying to set a new club points record. Samp had a slender hope of making the Europa League, but it was improbable. The hosts had serious injury problems, missing Fabio Quagliarella, Ricky Alvarez and Nicola Murru, while Duvan Zapata was not fit enough to start against his old club. Emiliano Viviano also pulled out in the warm-up, so Vid Belec got his Samp debut.

Dries Mertens thought he had scored after a couple of minutes, but the goal was ruled offside due to the flick on from a corner. Even with multiple replays, it’s not entirely clear if Raul Albiol did get a touch.

Belec needed early saves on a Lorenzo Insigne curler and Albiol’s header from a corner, then punched away a Piotr Zielinski strike from under the bar.

Insigne bent a dangerous effort just wide, but Sampdoria threatened just before half-time. First a Gaston Ramirez free kick was deflected wide, then from the resulting Lucas Torreira corner, Gian Marco Ferrari’s header bounced off the top of the crossbar.

Another Insigne right-foot curler skimmed the far post, as did the Dawid Kownacki counter-attack, while Belec performed a great save from point-blank range after Insigne’s give-and-go with Mertens.

Arkadiusz Milik came off the bench and made an immediate impact, as with practically his first touch he controlled from the edge of the box and curled a perfect left-foot strike into the far top corner.

In a first for Italian football, the referee stopped play for very loud anti-Neapolitan chants from the Sampdoria fans, the kind that regularly get clubs fined for ‘territorial discrimination.’ President Massimo Ferrero even walked on to the pitch and to the Curva, urging them to stop, but the ultras insulted him too.

When play resumed, Napoli doubled their lead, as the Insigne corner found Raul Albiol for a precise header.

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Sampdoria: Belec; Bereszynski, Ferrari, Andersen, Regini (Strinic 82); Linetty, Torreira, Praet; Ramirez; Caprari (Duvan Zapata 69), Kownacki (Alvarez 87)
Napoli: Reina; Hysaj, Albiol, Mario Rui; Allan (Rog 82), Jorginho, Zielinski; Callejon (Hamsik 67), Mertens (Milik 70), Insigne
Ref: Gavillucci