Napoli – Shakhtar Donetsk
Napoli welcomes Shakhtar Donetsk at the Stadio San Paolo in a match from Group F of the UEFA Champions League.
Surpising for many, but Napoli’s situation in the group is far from positive. The Italian team have won just 3 points in the matches so far, being on 6 points behind Shakhtar and the second place in the group. The Azzurri do not have any other option, but to win against Shakhtar and keep their chances of reaching the 1/8-finals alive.
In their four games so far, Napoli lost three times (including against Shakthar) and won just once – against the underdog in the group Feyenoord. Napoli are one of the best Italian teams at the moment, so there were higher expectations for their performance in this group. But now they are very close to leaving the competition. Anything but a win over Shakhtar would mean that Napoli will lose its chances to reach the knockout phase of the competition.
These two teams already met once in Kharkiv. The match ended with a 2-1 win for Shakhtar, thanks to goals by Taison and Facundo Ferreyra. The heavy injured at the moment Arkadiusz Milik scored the only goal for Napoli. But now the Polish striker can’t help his teammates.
It’s hard to say if Napoli could be called favourites in this clash. They are leaders in the Serie A, but they are also having some serious problems in the Champions League this season. Shakthar are doing much better and they will have enough confidence at Naples on Tuesday evening.
Everyone at Napoli knows that this is all or nothing game for the Italian club. Shakthar would be happy with a draw, because a draw would send them to the 1/8-finals. But Napoli don’t have any other option, but a win.