Napoli 3-0 Lazio: Cavani x 3

September 28, 2012
Napoli 3-0 Lazio: Cavani x 3

Edinson Cavani hit a hattrick – and missed a penalty – as Napoli stormed to victory.

Walter Mazzarri started Alessandro Gamberini rather than Salvatore Aronica in defence and Valon Behrami ahead of Blerim Dzemaili in midfield.

Vladimir Petkovic moved back to his 4-1-4-1 / 4-3-3 after an unsuccessful experimentation with 4-4-2 against Genoa, with Miroslav Klose returning upfront, Stefano Mauri moved inside and Senad Lulic out on the left.

Despite Klose’s early disallowed goal (struck off because he admitted punching the ball into the net), this was a fairly simple game. Napoli were more forceful, energetic and direct than Lazio – they won the battle in the midfield and counter-attacked swiftly. Read more »

Fiorentina 0-0 Juventus: home side dominate in a clash of similar systems

September 25, 2012
Fiorentina 0-0 Juventus: home side dominate in a clash of similar systems

3-5-2 versus 3-5-2, and one point apiece.

Vincenzo Montella made three changes. The most significant involved him selecting the industry of Romulo over the creativity of Mati Fernandez. Adem Ljajic came in for Haris Seferovic, and Manuel Pasqual for Mattia Cassani.

Antonio Conte and Massimo Carrera decided to rest Claudio Marchisio, with Emanuele Giaccherini starting instead. Fabio Quagliarella replaced Mirko Vucinic after his impressive impact in the last couple of games.

Fiorentina were the better side but struggled in front of goal, with Juventus seemingly happy with a point. Read more »

Schalke 0-2 Bayern: Kroos controls the game

September 24, 2012
Schalke 0-2 Bayern: Kroos controls the game

Bayern dominated possession throughout the match, and eventually found a route to goal.

Huub Stevens made just one change from the side that defeated Olympiakos in midweek, bringing in Julian Draxler in place of Tranquilo Barnetta.

Jupp Heynckes’ Bayern side had played a day later than Schalke (beating Valencia 2-1) so he freshened up the side with three changes – Mario Mandzukic was back in for Claudio Pizarro, while Thomas Muller and Luis Gustavo replaced Franck Ribery and Javi Martinez.

Bayern always seemed on top, but the game was lacking in excitement and tempo, so there were few goalscoring chances until the away side took command early in the second half. Read more »