SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 18 - 22 Dec 2012 (14.00 UK)
0 - 2 Napoli
Maggio 85 (N), Cavani pen 90 (N)
Stadio Artemio Franchi - Montepaschi Arena

Napoli struggled for a long while, but Christian Maggio eventually opened the door to a late 2-0 win on Siena boss Beppe Iachini’s Serie A debut.

It was crisis time for both teams, as Siena made their Serie A debut under new Coach Iachini, while the Partenopei had lost four on the trot between the League and Coppa Italia. Robur already began their Iachini experience in an unlucky Coppa defeat on penalties to Lazio midweek. Napoli had terrible memories of Tuscany, as their last victory here was in 1946.

This was the first Serie A game for Napoli since they were docked two points and saw Paolo Cannavaro and Gianluca Grava given six-month bans in the betting scandal. On top of that, Gokhan Inler was suspended for this trip with Blerim Dzemaili injured, so Marek Hamsik went into a trequartista role. Siena had Simone Vergassola, Massimo Paci and Luis Neto banned.

Lorenzo Insigne cut in to drill just wide of the upright, while Edinson Cavani failed to get on the end of an Insigne free kick and Gianluca Pegolo smothered an Alessandro Gamberini counter-attack.

Gaetano D’Agostino flashed a dangerous pass across the face of goal, but no Siena players were ready to tap in.

Napoli seemed shell-shocked by their recent setbacks and Cavani misplaced a simple pass for Insigne.

The Partenopei came out fighting for the second half, as Hamsik forced a corner and from that set play Pegolo had to fingertip a Cavani header out from under the bar.

Goran Pandev was also introduced for an all-attack Napoli line-up and Insigne’s curler whistled inches wide of the upright.

Napoli finally found a way through with Christian Maggio, who was alert to redirect a Hamsik cross-shot from a corner, prodding in from a couple of yards at the base of the near post.

Moments later Pandev was felled by Dias Felipe in a clear penalty and Cavani converted successfully to sink Siena.

The Tuscans lost their temper and Emanuele Calaio was sent off against his old club for an elbow.


: Pegolo; Dellafiore, Contini, Felipe; Belmonte (Mannini 69), Bolzoni, D’Agostino, Valiani, Rubin; Rosina (Reginaldo 75), Calaiò
Napoli: De Sanctis; Campagnaro, Gamberini (Pandev 68), Britos; Maggio, Behrami, Donadel, Zuniga (Mesto 81); Hamsik; Insigne (El Kaddouri 85), Cavani
Ref: De Marco

Sent off: Calaio' 91 (S)