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Napoli v Arsenal betting preview
Napoli are unbeaten in 21 of 22 home games this termNapoli have a mountain to climb if they want to qualify for the next round. They went down 2-0 in last week’s first leg at Emirates Stadium but Carlo Ancelotti's side ended a three-match winless run at the weekend with a 3-1 victory over Chievo, defending their 2nd place in the Serie A table from their closest chasers. The Partenopei are a different beast at the Stadium San Paolo where they are W16-D5-L1 this season, with only Juventus managing to beat them this term. During the last Europa League round, Napoli seemingly beat Salzburg with ease at this venue (3:0).
Raul Albiol is unlikely to feature despite returning to training this week and will be replaced by Nikola Maksimovic at the heart of the back alongside Kalidou Koulibaly. Kevin Malcuit is pushing Elseid Hysaj for a place as right back while Mario Rui should start at left-back. Arkadiusz Milik may be welcomed back in the forward line, with Dries Mertens expected to make way. Ounas and Simone Verdi are other offensive options. Fabian Ruiz and Allan will feature from the off in the middle of the park, with Josè Callejon and Piotr Zielinski out wide. Amadou Diawara remains sidelined.
Arsenal have won 5 of their last 6 matches in all competitionsArsenal enter this clash on the back of a 1-0 away win at Watford, a result that left the Gunners fourth in the Premier League standings, one point shy of Tottenham and level on points with Chelsea (but the North Londoners have on game in hand). Monday's result means that Unai Emery's men have won 5 of the last 6 matches and have only conceded a single goal - against Everton (1:0). The Gunners have lost both of their knockout stage matches on the road this season - 3:1 at Rennes and 1:0 at BATE Borisov - and can't be too much relaxed. Their away record is really poor as they are W3-D3-L7 since the start of December.
Lucas Torreira is a doubt after coming off with a groin injury against Watford on Monday night. He should join Rob Holding, Hector Bellerin and Danny Welbeck on the sidelines. Granit Xhaka is fully recovered and should replace the Uruguayan in the middle of the park. Alexandre Lacazette did not play any part against Watford and is almost certain to start in Naples. Mesut Ozil and Aaron Ramsey are likely to play as offensive midfielders, with Henrikh Mhkitaryan, Alex Iwobi and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang viable alternatives upfront. Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Sead Kolasinac should be Emery's choices as wing backs.
Napoli v Arsenal Starting Lineups Napoli (4-4-2): Meret; Hysaj, Maksimovic, Koulibaly, Mario Rui; Callejon, Allan, Fabian Ruiz, Zielinski; Insigne, Milik
Arsenal (3-4-2-1): Cech; Sokratis, Koscielny, Monreal; Maitland-Niles, Xhaka, Guendouzi, Kolasinac; Ramsey, Ozil; Lacazette
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