Serie A Matchday 28: Italy's top two meet in Naples

Tom Hancock
LiveScore
04/03/202209:55
Napoli midfielder Fabian Ruiz has scored six Serie A goals this season
Napoli midfielder Fabian Ruiz has scored six Serie A goals this season

The tightest title race in Europe’s top five leagues continues this weekend — and Napoli are currently in pole position.

The Partenopei are involved in the standout clash of Matchday 28 as they host fellow challengers AC Milan, who only trail them on goal difference.

Elsewhere, third-placed Inter Milan entertain Salernitana, top-four hopefuls Roma and Atalanta face off in the capital and Lazio travel to Cagliari.

Game of the week: Napoli vs AC Milan (Sunday, 7.45pm)

With Inter playing tonight, Napoli could find themselves second by the time Milan roll into Naples — but a win would take them top once again.

Luciano Spalletti’s outfit have picked up a league-high 18 points since the halfway point of the campaign and will be looking to extend their unbeaten run to nine games.

However, the visitors have only lost one of their last nine and head to the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona with Serie A’s joint-best away record in terms of points per game (2.31).

That said, Milan have endured a torrid time against the Partenopei in recent years, winning only one of their last 14 league meetings.

Napoli go into this game having scored the most goals from outside the box in the division (10, six of them through Fabian Ruiz). The Rossoneri rank just behind with nine though.

These two last met just before Christmas, when Elif Elmas’ fifth-minute header was enough for Napoli to claim all three points at the San Siro.

Napoli's superior goal difference is all that separates them and AC Milan at the top of Serie A
Napoli's superior goal difference is all that separates them and AC Milan at the top of Serie A

Here are the other big games to watch this weekend…

Inter Milan vs Salernitana (Friday, 7.45pm)

Victory for Inter will take them top for at least 48 hours — and they will be heavy favourites against rock-bottom Salernitana, despite not having won in four games.

No Serie A team has a higher win rate this season against sides currently in the bottom half of the table than Inter, who have won 10 out of 12 encounters with such opposition (83%).

Salernitana remain rooted to the foot of the table but they have drawn their last four matches — having previously not gone more than one without losing — holding Milan on Matchday 26.

And the visitors have outscored Inter so far in 2022, finding the net nine times to the Nerazzurri’s six.

The reigning Serie A champions asserted their superiority in the reverse fixture though, running out 5-0 winners with five different goalscorers.

Inter thrashed Salernitana 5-0 in their previous Serie A meeting, though the expected goals scoreline was closer
Inter thrashed Salernitana 5-0 in their previous Serie A meeting, though the expected goals scoreline was closer

Roma vs Atalanta (Saturday, 5pm)

Out-of-form Atalanta stopped the rot by thumping Sampdoria 4-0 last weekend — and they travel to Roma knowing a win could put them back into the top four.

But victory for Jose Mourinho’s hosts would take them above La Dea and potentially to within three points of a Champions League place.

The Giallorossi go into this game unbeaten in six league games — although they have only won one of their last five home matches, with both their most recent two victories coming on the road.

Atalanta finally lost on their travels for the first time all season on Matchday 26 but Gian Piero Gasperini’s side are still Serie A’s joint-best away performers by points per game (2.31).

Roma will hope for a repeat of their previous meeting, which saw Tammy Abraham bag a brace as they ran out 4-1 winners in Bergamo.

Cagliari vs Lazio (Saturday, 7.45pm)

A revived Cagliari will be aiming to make it six games unbeaten, as they take on a Lazio side hoping to bounce back from last Sunday’s stoppage-time loss to Napoli.

Only three teams have collected more points in 2022 than Cagliari (15), who have won four and drawn three of their eight games since the turn of the year.

Lazio have not lost any of their previous 15 encounters with the Rossoblu though, with their last defeat coming on the final day of the 2012-13 campaign.

In fact, since 2010, Cagliari have suffered 17 top-flight defeats to the Biancocelesti, which is more than against any other opponent apart from Juventus.

September’s reverse fixture finished 2-2, with Lazio equalising late on through Danilo Cataldi.

Juventus vs Spezia (Sunday, 5pm)

Dusan Vlahovic is Serie A's top scorer this season with 20 goals for Juventus and Fiorentina
Dusan Vlahovic is Serie A's top scorer this season with 20 goals for Juventus and Fiorentina

Juventus extended their unbeaten top-flight run to 13 games with a 3-2 win at Empoli on Matchday 27 — and they will be looking to maintain a 100% Serie A record against Spezia on Sunday.

Thiago Motta’s men head to the Allianz Stadium having lost three on the spin. A fourth straight defeat would mark their worst losing streak since promotion to Serie A in 2020.

Juve could keep another, more niche run going here too, as Max Allegri’s team have scored a header in each of their last three league matches.

The visitors, by contrast, have only netted two headed goals all season — the joint fewest in the division.

Spezia came from behind to lead the reverse meeting in September, before Juve recovered to win that encounter 3-2.

The weekend's other games

Udinese vs Sampdoria (Saturday, 2pm)

Genoa vs Empoli (Sunday, 11.30am)

Fiorentina v Verona (Sunday, 2pm)

Bologna vs Torino (Sunday, 2pm)

Venezia vs Sassuolo (Sunday, 2pm)

Follow each game with our unbeatable live scores service. Simply tap the Scores tab on the web or download the LiveScore app from the App Store for iOS devices or Google Play for Android.

Tags

Serie ASSC NapoliAC MilanInterSalernitanaRomaAtalantaCagliariLazioJuventusSpezia
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