Italian Serie A: Osimhen Nets Brace As Napoli Begin Title Defense With A Win

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Victor Osimhen netted twice after Matteo Politano’s equaliser as Napoli came back from an early Frosinone penalty to start their title defence on the right foot.

The Partenopei began the defence of their crown against the side that won the Serie B title last season, although both had changed coaches over the summer. Kvicha Kvaratskhelia was out injured, with Jens Cajuste thrown in for his debut as Andre Frank Zambo Anguissa was not fully recovered.

Cajuste didn’t have the best start to life in Serie A, as his clumsy attempt to clear a corner saw him kick Jaime Baez instead, so Abdou Harroui converted the resulting penalty.

Victor Osimhen’s header was charged down by Anthony Oyono and Alex Meret risked a howler on a back-pass, but Napoli equalised when a couple of attempts were blocked, leading to Matteo Politano’s strike surprising Stefano Turati at the third time of asking.

Baez saw his audacious volley hit the side-netting and Napoli had the ball in the net again on 35 minutes with Giacomo Raspadori’s half-volley, but it was disallowed over an earlier Cajuste offside.

It was only a warning, as Napoli did take the lead when Giovanni Di Lorenzo robbed Riccardo Marchizza down the right and pulled back for Osimhen’s rocket off the underside of the crossbar from 14 yards.

Baez could not have come closer to an equaliser on 57 minutes when his free kick went over the wall and thumped the near post with Meret beaten.

Moments later, Osimhen’s right-foot curler skimmed the far top corner of the net and Stanislav Lobotka also turned just wide.

Napoli added a third with Di Lorenzo’s smart first touch, allowing Osimhen to spring the offside trap and beat the goalkeeper one-on-one.

Turati used his legs to parry a Giovanni Simeone strike, which would’ve been another Di Lorenzo assist, while Zielinski’s penalty appeal was rejected as he went down too easily under the Monterisi lean.

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