Napoli picked up their first victory in their opening fixture of the 2022/23 Serie A season, humiliating Hellas Verona with a 2-5 scoreline on the latter’s home soil.
With the away side being more demonstrative in possession, Verona had to wait for their golden chance, which eventually arrived in the shape of a corner in the 29th minute of the match. A towering header from Koray Günter directed the delivery in the path of Kevin Lasagna, who escaped Mário Rui’s marking before breaking the deadlock for the home side.
A cross from a lively Hirving Lozano prompted the reaction from Napoli, with their new summer signing Khvicha Kvaratskhelia heading the ball into the nets to score an equaliser. Victor Osimhen extended the lead for the visitors before the half-time whistle.
Three minutes into the second half, Thomas Henry equalised off Marco Davide Faraoni’s service. A darting run from Piotr Zielinski found a cunning pass from Kvaratskhelia, who registered his first assist in Serie A as the Polish attacker finished the move in style.
Lack of concentration in the Verona defence allowed Stanislav Lobotka to roam forward with the ball and find the space to shoot. In what was the next thing, Verona fans could see the visitors extending the lead on the scoreboard. Coming off the bench, Matteo Politano put more misery on Verona as he became Napoli’s fifth scorer on the evening.
Despite scoring in abundance, Napoli remained a threat as they continued to look for more goals. Nevertheless, their quest finally came to an end as the referee blew the final whistle. Here are the player ratings from Napoli’s 5-2 win over Verona.
Verona (3-5-2): Montipó (4); Dawidowicz (5.5), Gunter (6), Amione (5.5); Faraoni (6.5), Tameze (5.5), Hongla (6), Ilic (6), Lazovic (6); Henry (7), Lasagna (7) | Substitutes: Retsos (5.5), Piccoli (6), Barák (5.5), Duric (6)
Napoli (4-3-3): Meret (6); Di Lorenzo (7), Rrahmani (6), Min-Jae (6.5), Rui (6); Anguissa (7.5), Lobotka (8), Zielinski (8); Lozano (8.5), Osimhen (8.5), Kvaratskhelia (8.5) | Substitutes: Elmas (6.5), Zerbin (5), Politano (7), Olivera (N/A), Ounas (N/A)
GIFN | Jyotirmoy Halder