Napoli - Roma Betting Preview: Tight encounter in store at the San Paolo

I Partenopei ran out 3-0 winners against these opponents just a month ago, but Al Hain-Cole expects a much closer affair on Sunday as their hectic schedule catches up with them
With Juventus head and shoulders above the rest in Serie A, Roma and Napoli continue their battle for second place when they come face-to-face at the Stadio San Paolo on Sunday.

Currently six points ahead of their hosts with a game in hand, i Giallorossi are available at 23/10 (3.30) with bet365 to secure their grip on Italy’s second automatic Champions League spot with a victory here.

However, having recorded a resounding 3-0 Coppa Italia win over their opponents on this ground just last month, Rafa Benitez’s men are 6/5 (2.20) favourites to close the gap by coming out on top once again.

The hosts have picked up just two points from their last two league fixtures and are on offer at 23/10 (3.30) to play out yet another draw this time out.

That defeat in Naples was just Rudi Garcia’s second since taking over at the Stadio Olimpico in the summer, having only previously lost to runaway leaders Juventus by the very same scoreline.

Just as after the result in Turin, when they went four games without conceding, Garcia’s team have rediscovered their defensive prowess since crashing out of the cup by keeping three consecutive clean sheets, meaning they have let in just a single goal in their last seven Serie A games.

While this resilience is bound to come under pressure against a team that have failed to score only once in 20 home games this season, the visitors are unlikely to be overrun by the energetic attacking performance that saw them come unstuck here last month.

Having played five games to Roma’s three since the last encounter due to their Europa League commitments, and with many players returning from international duty only on Thursday, i Partenopei will surely lack the vigour required to break down the league’s most miserly defence, meaning a tight game looks likely.

Considering a tired Napoli team only managed to score once against a leaky Livorno defence last time out, odds of 19/20 (1.95) look too good to miss on under 2.5 goals going in for their fourth consecutive league game in this one.

Under 2.5 goals for a 2pt stake at 19/20 (1.95) with bet365

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Al Hain-Cole is an experienced tipster and avid follower of European football. He specialises in accumulators and if you would like to read more from Al you can follow him on Twitter here.