Napoli and Venezia get their Serie A campaign underway when they trade tackles at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona on Sunday.
Napoli missed out on a place in the Champions League by just one point after playing out a 1-1 draw against Hellas Verona on the final day of the season.
The Azzurri finished fifth, one point behind fourth-placed Juventus, while the visitors secured promotion courtesy of a 2-1 aggregate victory over Citadella in May’s playoff final.
Napoli endured a sour end to their 2020-21 Serie A campaign as they dropped out of the Champions League places on the final day of the season.
However, they had a superb pre-season, where they picked up five wins from their five games, scoring 20 goals in that time.
They head into Sunday’s game off the back of a 2-1 victory over second tier Ascoli.
In that encounter, Lorenzo Insigne and Eljif Elmas scored either side of Soufiane Bidaoui’s equalizer to hand Napoli a well-deserved win.
Napoli are unbeaten in their last 13 games, picking up 10 wins and three draws.
Similarly, Venezia enjoyed a fine pre-season, picking up two wins and three draws.
They took this form into the Coppa Italia where they saw off Frosinone on penalties following a 1-1 draw in regular time.
Head coach Paolo Zanetti will hope his side can maintain their recent run of results and pick up a dream start to their top-flight campaign.
Napoli vs Venezia Head-To-Head
Sunday’s encounter will be the fifth meeting between the two teams. Venezia have had the upper hand in their previous four matches, claiming one win and three draws. Napoli are yet to taste victory against the newly promoted side.
Napoli Form Guide (all competitions): W-W-W-W-W
Venezia Form Guide (all competitions): D-W-W-D-W
Napoli vs Venezia Team News
New boss Mauricio Sarri will be unable to call upon the services of Diego Demme, Filippo Costa and Faouzi Ghoulam, who have all been sidelined through injuries.
Injured: Diego Demme, Filippo Costa, Faouzi Ghoulam
Barring any fitness issues, head coach Paolo Zanetti has a full house at his disposal and we expect him to name his strongest XI.
Napoli vs Venezia Predicted XI
Napoli Predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Alex Meret (GK); Giovanni Di Lorenzo, Kalidou Koulibaly, Konstantinos Manolas, Mario Rui; Stanislav Lobotka, Fabian Ruiz; Matteo Politano, Piotr Zielinski, Lorenzo Insigne; Victor Osimhen
Venezia Predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Niki Maenpaa; Tyronne Ebuehi, Mattia Caldara, Pietro Ceccaroni, David Schnegg; Luca Fiordilino, Dor Peretz, Daan Heymans; Francesco Di Mariano, Francesco Forte, Dennis Johnsen
Napoli vs Venezia Prediction
Napoli head into this game in blistering form, claiming five wins from five pre-season friendly games. Venezia will be in high spirits following their Coppa Italia victory last time out and we expect them to put up a fight against the hosts.
However, Napoli boast a significantly superior and experienced crop of players and we predict they will put that to good use to claim all three points.
Prediction: Napoli 3-0 Venezia
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