Serie A round: Osimian scores late, Napoli beat Roma for 11th straight win

Serie A round: Osimian scores late, Napoli beat Roma for 11th straight win

ROME (AP) — Jose Mourinho’s physical Roma side came closer than most teams to keeping high-scoring Napoli off the net.

Ultimately, though, Napoli’s array of talented forwards again proved too much to handle.

Victor Osimian scored 10 minutes from time and Serie A leaders Napoli won 1-0 at the Stadio Olimpico on Sunday to equal the club’s record 11th consecutive victory in all competitions.

And what was the purpose?

Osimian collected a goal at the top, got past Roma centre-back Chris Smalling and fired a low shot into the far side of the net from an almost impossible angle on the right.

“Roma gave us a hard time but we showed that Napoli are hard to beat.” Osimin said.

Napoli once again moved three points ahead of defending champions AC Milan, who beat Silvio Berlusconi’s Monza on Saturday. Roma remained in fifth place.

Roma did not score a single goal.

“I feel the injustice and hug my players, because they did everything possible and I think they did enough to avoid defeat,” Mourinho said. “We knew whoever scored a goal would win, and it was Napoli.”

The only other time Napoli won 11 straight was in 1986 when Diego Maradona played for the club. Maradona, who died in 2020, guided Napoli to just two Serie A titles in 1987 and 1990.

Napoli have won seven straight in Serie A with four wins in the Champions League – including one-sided victories over Liverpool, Rangers and Ajax to qualify for the knockout stages with two games in hand.

Napoli beat Liverpool 4-1 and played 10 overs in two games against Ajax.

It was a sweet victory for Napoli coach Luciano Spalletti, who managed Roma on two separate occasions. He infamously became the target of fans’ ire for his treatment of Francesco Totti as the club icon eased into retirement during his second spell in the capital.

Spalletti has made all the right moves with Napoli this season. Giacomo Raspadori and Giovanni Simeone filled in well for Osimane when the Nigerian forward was recently injured, and both also provided goals from the bench. But Spelletti kept Osimian until the end and was rewarded with his selection.

Napoli also had a potential goal from Tanguy Ndombele in the first half ruled out by VAR. The referee initially appeared to have fouled Roma goalkeeper Rui Patricio but replays showed the keeper got his hand on the ball before making contact with Ndombele.

Mourinho called for a yellow card for Ndombele, accusing the French midfielder of diving.

Mourinho kept his comment on the touchline and was shown a yellow card for dissent early in the second half as Napoli went forward too often.

Beat Atalanta and Yodinis

Atalanta and Udinese, two provincial clubs that impressed at the start of the season, both lost at home.

Atalanta’s unbeaten start ended with a 2-0 defeat to Lazio while Udinese were beaten 2-1 by Torino for their first league defeat since opening day.

Mattia Zaccagni and Filipe Anderson scored for Lazio at the start of each half respectively, as the Roman club did not lose injured centre-forward Ciro Immobili.

It was Lazio’s sixth straight clean sheet and the victory moved Lazio above Atalanta to third, albeit level on points with the Bergamo club.

Atalanta striker Luis Morell received his second yellow card in the 90th.

Goals from Ola Aina and Pietro Pellegri helped Torino to their first league win in more than a month.

It was Udinese’s first league defeat since a 4–2 loss to defending champions AC Milan on 13 August. It has won six straight matches but drawn the last two in Serie A – against Atalanta and Lazio.

Udinese, who was also knocked out of the Italian Cup by Monza in midweek, finished sixth.

Torino moved up to ninth.

Also, Thiago Motta picked up his first Serie A win as Bologna coach as his team-mates beat Strateger Lecce 2-0.

Bologna have lost three of Motta’s four league games in charge, drawing the other.

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