Napoli commence their Scudetto defence today as they kick off their Serie A campaign against newly promoted Frosinone.
Napoli ended 33 years of hurt and near misses and clinched the Serie A title under the tutelage of Luciano Spalletti last season. The Partenopei will hope to replicate last campaign’s wonderful start which only stuttered a bit during November but never looked like going out of course.
Breakout star Khvicha Kvaratskhelia (12 goals and 10 assists in the league) and striker Victor Osimhen, who won the Capocannoniere after his 26-goal haul during the season were instrumental in helping their club lift the Scudetto title. Both will continue their stay at the club and if they manage to repeat the performances from last season, Napoli should be able to mount a significant challenge in retaining the feat.
While Luciano Spalletti aborted his sabbatical and will now manage the Italy National Team, the Naples-based club has appointed Rudi Garcia, who despite criticism, has led the club through a successful pre-season.
Meanwhile, Serie B champions Frosinone face a humongous task today as they have lost all of their last four top-flight meetings against Napoli, conceding 15 goals during the clashes.
This will be the Gialloblu’s third time taking on the Serie A in a decade, losing their opening day fixture during the previous two times, against Torino in 2015 and against Atalanta in 2018.
Newly appointed manager Eusebio Di Francesco returns to the Serie A for the first time since his sacking by Hellas Verona in 2021. He has already led Frosinone through an unbeaten pre-season and has made his mark by registering a win in the first round of the Coppa Italia against Pisa.
The Italian manager will hope to keep his side afloat in the top flight and earning points from tougher opposition this season would prove valuable to them.
Results from their last five matches across all competitions
W D D W W
W W W W D
Manager Rudi Garcia is set to start either of Leo Ostigard or Juan Jesus in defence following the departure of Kim Min-Jae to Bayern Munich.
Khvicha Kvaratskhelia and Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa will miss today’s game through injury.
Alex Meret is set to start in goal and new signing Jens Cajuste might get some minutes.
As for Frosinone, Abdou Harroui and Luca Mazzitalli are set to start the game.
Enzo Barrenechea will aim to make a bigger impact this season after breaking through last season.
Frosinone (4-3-3): Turati; Oyono, Monterisi, Romagnoli, Marchizza; Gelli, Mazzitelli, Harroui; Baez, Borrelli, Caso
Napoli (4-3-3): Meret; Di Lorenzo, Rrahmani, Jesus, Olivera; Elmas, Lobotka, Zielinski; Politano, Osimhen, Raspadori
Trambak Bhattacherjee | GIFN