Napoli vs RB Leipzig preview

February 14, 2018
By: Nemanja Lazarevic

Serie A leaders Napoli will be vying Bundesliga high-flyers RB Leipzig for a place in the Europa League last 16 stage after crashing out of the Champions League group stage.

The German side have the potential to cause Azzurri problems at Stadio San Paolo, and it remains to be seen whether they will be able to.

Even if the Serie A title chase has the priority this season, Napoli were keen on impressing in Europe as well, but they ultimately failed to pip Shakhtar Donetsk to a place in the UCL knockout stages.

Meanwhile, the Azzurri have been quite impressive in the league, making sure to stay one point ahead of holders Juventus, and they face a very interesting race with the Bianconeri.

Maurizio Sarri’s side have won last five games, meaning they head into the RB Leipzig clash full of confidence, albeit with a much changed line-up.

According to reports, the highly rated tactician is set to make wholesale changes to his team, with the likes of Ounas, Rog, Sepe and Diawara getting a chance to shine.

Probable starting line-up (4-3-3): Sepe – Maggio, Tonelli, Koulibaly, Hysaj – Rog, Diawara, Zielinski – Ounas, Callejon, Insigne.

RB Leipzig are on the road to become one of top German sides and regular in top European competitions, and they are already leaving their mark in Europe.

The Bundesliga team finished third in their Champions League group despite picking up seven points in six group games and they can be proud with their maiden UCL performance.

RB Leipzig now have a chance to impress in Europa League, although facing star-studded Napoli can be a daunting prospect.

However, with the Azzurri unlikely to risk their star players in the EL double header, the German team do have a chance to produce an upset.

Head coach Ralph Hasenhuttl should welcome back midfielders Marcel Sabitzer and Diego Demme, but Emil Forsberg may not be risked.

Probable starting line-up (4-4-2): Gulacsi – Laimer, Orban, Upamecano, Klostermann – Keita, Ilsanker, Kampl, Sabitzer – Poulsen, Werner.

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