Napoli held, lose perfect Serie A record

 

Victor James Osimhen of SSC Napoli in action during the Serie A match between ACF Fiorentina and SSC Napoli at Stadio Artemio Franchi on August 28, 2022 in Florence, Italy.

Three rounds into Serie A and parity is again the theme of the Italian league.

After last season's title was decided on the final day of the season, there are already no longer any clubs with perfect records in this campaign.

Napoli, the last squad who remained perfect, were held to a 0-0 draw at Fiorentina on Sunday.

Napoli still remained atop the standings on goal differential, but are level on seven points with five other clubs: defending champions AC Milan, Lazio, Atalanta, Torino and Roma.

After producing five and then four goals in their first two matches, Napoli were off target against the Viola.

Irving Lozano missed wide on a close-range header early in the second half, while center forward Victor Osimhen had a goal waved off for offside shortly before the break.

Osimhen has been involved in the speculation over a potential move by Cristiano Ronaldo from Manchester United to Napoli, with the expectation that the 23-year-old Nigeria international would replace the five-time world player of the year at the Premier League club in an expensive transfer.

"If a club offers you EUR100 million ($A145m) for a player, it's difficult not to take that into consideration," Napoli coach Luciano Spalletti said.

Fiorentina threatened midway through the second half with a dangerous shot from Antonin Barak and the hosts' last significant chance was a long effort from new signing Giacomo Raspadori that was palmed wide by Fiorentina goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini.

Elsewhere, Atalanta extended their unbeaten start with a 1-0 win at regional rivals Hellas Verona.

Teun Koopmeiners scored early in the second half with a long-distance, bouncing shot as Atalanta followed up their opening-round win at Sampdoria and draw with Milan with another solid performance.

"We want to get back into Europe -- and preferably into the Champions League," Koopmeiners, who has scored three of his five Serie A goals from beyond the area, said.

Boulaye Dia scored one goal and assisted on two others in his first start as Salernitana beat up on visiting Sampdoria 4-0 and Lecce earned their first point by drawing 1-1 with visiting Empoli.

 

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