Napoli beats Roma for 11th straight win

Mathias VIna of AS Roma protest against Victor Osimhen of SSC Napoli at the end of the Serie A match between AS Roma and SSC Napoli at Stadio Olimpico on October 23, 2022 in Rome, Italy.

Jose Mourinho’s physical Roma squad came closer than most teams have to keeping high-scoring Napoli out of the net.

In the end, though, Napoli’s vast array of talented forwards again proved too much to handle.

Victor Osimhen scored 10 minutes from time and Serie A leader Napoli won 1-0 at the Stadio Olimpico on Sunday to match a club record with their 11th consecutive victory across all competitions.

And what a goal it was.

Osimhen collected a ball over the top, muscled his way past Roma’s imposing centre back Chris Smalling and unleashed a low shot into the far side of the net from an almost impossible angle on the right flank.

Napoli again moved three points clear of defending champion AC Milan, who beat Silvio Berlusconi’s Monza on Saturday. Roma remained fifth.

The only other time Napoli won 11 straight came in 1986 when Diego Maradona was playing for the club. Maradona, who died in 2020, went on to lead Napoli to their only two Serie A titles in 1987 and 1990.

Napoli have won seven straight in Serie A with four victories in the Champions League – qualifying for the knockout stage with two matches to spare with lopsided wins over Liverpool, Rangers and Ajax.

Napoli embarrassed Liverpool 4-1 and scored 10 over two matches with Ajax.

It was a sweet win for Napoli coach Luciano Spalletti, who managed Roma on two different occasions. He infamously became a target of fans’ ire for his treatment of Francesco Totti as the club icon eased into retirement during his second spell in the capital.

Atalanta and Udinese, two provincial clubs that had impressed early in the season, both lost at home.

Atalanta’s unbeaten start ended with a 2-0 defeat to surging Lazio while Udinese were beaten 2-1 by Torino for their first league loss since the opening day.

Mattia Zaccagni and Felipe Anderson scored for Lazio at the start of each half, respectively.

,It was Lazio’s sixth straight clean sheet and the victory moved Lazio ahead of Atalanta into third place, although level on points with the Bergamo club.

Atalanta striker Luis Muriel picked up his second yellow card in the 90th.

Goals from Ola Aina and Pietro Pellegri helped Torino earn their first league win in more than a month.

It was Udinese’s first league defeat since a 4-2 loss at defending champion AC Milan on August 13 and they remained sixth.

Torino moved up to ninth.

Also, Thiago Motta earned his first Serie A win as Bologna coach as his team beat fellow struggler Lecce 2-0.

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