Napoli’s 2-0 win against Empoli on Saturday was the perfect example of Victor Osimhen’s brilliance securing Napoli’s position at the top of the Serie A table. Napoli are now a staggering 18 points ahead of second-placed Inter Milan, and have kept a clean sheet in their last four league matches for a second time under Coach Luciano Spalletti. It was a performance that will be remembered for many years to come.
Victor Osimhen’s goal was the moment many Napoli fans had been waiting for; his first in Serie A since joining Napoli from Lille in January 2021. The Nigerian striker showed an incredible level of composure as he controlled the ball with one touch before lashing it into the bottom corner with his weaker right foot, past a helpless Empoli goalkeeper. The goal illustrated why Napoli had decided to invest so heavily in him and brought back memories of Napoli legend Diego Maradona, who wore the Napoli jersey with distinction for seven years during his career.
While Osimhen’s finish provided Napoli with a crucial lead, it was Ardian Ismajli’s own goal that sealed Napoli’s victory and ensured they stayed top of the table by 18 points. The defender skewed an attempted clearance off Lorenzo Insigne’s corner kick past his own keeper to double Napoli’s lead and put three invaluable points on the board.
The victory also came despite Napoli being reduced to 10 men after defender Kostas Manolas received two yellow cards within ten minutes just before half-time, perhaps highlighting Napoli’s resilience and determination to stay at the top this season.
Coach Luciano Spalletti has certainly seen results since joining Napoli in 2020 and deserves credit for keeping them at the summit of Italian football all season long. While Napoli already had quality players such as Dries Mertens, Fabian Ruiz, Allan Souza and Insigne prior to his arrival, he has managed to bring out the best in them by instilling an approach that is both aggressive yet calculated; something which has been essential in their rise this term while playing against teams like Juventus and Inter Milan who possess world class players like Cristiano Ronaldo and Romelu Lukaku respectively.
Osimhen is yet another player who has flourished under Spalletti’s management; he has scored six goals so far this season, including four assists – making him one of only two African players to score more than five goals in Serie A this season alongside Udinese forward Seko Fofana from Ivory Coast. His contribution to Napoli’s success should not go unnoticed either as he continues to prove how valuable he can be going forward throughout 2021/2022 campaign.
Overall, Saturday night served as proof again why Napolo remain at the very top of Italian football, showing great ability when it matters most even when reduced to 10 men against tough opposition such as Empoli.. With Victor Osimhen leading their charge up front coupled with coach Luciano Spalletti’s tactical nous on display every week it looks set that Napolo will remain dominant until at least May 2021 – wearing their iconic blue and white kit proudly all along.