Receiving some criticism ahead of Napoli’s Champions League clash against Chelsea, Ezequiel Lavezzi puts down all the doubters after his two goals helped the Southern Italian side defeated Andre Villas-Boas team.
The Partenopei went on winning 3-1 with Edinson Cavani adding Lavezzi’s brace, providing a pretty good result for Walter Mazzarri’s side, something they can hold on to ahead of the second leg at Stamford Bridge in around three weeks time.
Being in a better form than their opponent, Napoli tried to take full control of the match and they pretty much did so in the first 20 minutes where the home team simply dominated their opponent. However, despite creating more goal scoring chances, it was Chelsea who took the lead against the run of play as a defensive error by Paolo Cannavaro allowing Juan Mata to take full advantage and scoring the opening goal for the visitor.
Trailing a goal down, things looking difficult for Napoli as conceding a goal at home are always difficult in European tie such as the Champions League, let alone it happened against a much more experienced side. Fortunately for the home team, Lavezzi wore his scoring boots on the day as despite Chelsea’s improved confidence, the Argentinian managed to grab the equalizing goal after his curling shot beat Peter Cech all ends up.
The equalizing goal made things more interesting as both teams continue to create chances but Napoli turned the tie around in injury time as Cavani successfully chest down Gokhan Inler’s cross passed Cech. A goal which drove the crowd at San Paolo wild as they were fiercely celebrating at another potential magical night for the Southern Italian side, despite the fear in the early 30 minutes when the Blues took the lead first.
Despite leading, Napoli didn’t managed to maintain their pressure in the second half, allowing Chelsea to have the better of the match, threatening an equalizer which would obviously troubled the Italian side even more. However, it turned out to be Lavezzi’s day indeed as the Argentinian once again provide the goods for the home team as he scored his second goal in the match, receiving a nice assist from Cavani.
The Partenopei looking comfortable at 3-1, although they were visibly eying for a fourth but in the final 10 minutes it’s pretty clear that getting a two goal advantage is considered good enough for them. Mazzzarri’s boys hold up well until the final whistle, not giving another away goal for the London outfit, providing a much more confident boost for the second leg tie at Stamford Bridge.
Napoli v Chelsea 3-1
Goals: Lavezzi 38, 65, Cavani 45+2 (Napoli); Mata 27 (Chelsea)
Napoli:De Sanctis; Campagnaro, Cannavaro, Aronica; Maggio, Gargano, Inler, Zuniga; Hamsik (Pandev 82), Lavezzi (Dzemaili 73); Cavani
Chelsea:Cech; Ivanovic, Cahill, David Luiz, Bosingwa (A Cole 11); Ramires, Raul Meireles (Essien 70), Malouda (Lampard 70); Sturridge, Drogba, Mata