Napoli confirmed their place in the knockout phase of the Champions League with two games to spare but don’t expect the Partenopei to break out the slippers and cigars when they host Rangers this evening. Napoli will be determined to prolong a winning streak that currently stands at 11 games in all competitions and their thirst for momentum is bad news for Group A whipping boys Rangers.
We’ve got a stats pack for this evening’s fixture below, which contains useful info on shots, shots on target, xG, cards, corners and more from Napoli and Rangers’ domestic league campaigns. Hopefully, you can turn our research into some winning bet builders later today.
Defender Amir Rrahmani is absent for Napoli this evening, while Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa and Salvatore Sirigu are both considered doubtful.
Luciano Spalletti could choose to leave Victor Osimhen on the bench this evening and Giacomo Raspadori would be first in line to take the Nigerian striker’s place in that scenario.
Rangers will be without the services of Ianis Hagi, Filip Helander, Connor Goldson, Ryan Jack, John Souttar and Tom Lawrence in Naples.
With Connor Goldson out, Ben Davies and James Sands could be partnered at centre-half. Scott Arfield, Steven Davis and John Lundstram could make up a midfield trio with an average age of 32.6.
Napoli are the only remaining team in Serie A with an unbeaten record this season and alongside recording nine victories in 11 games, the early pace-setters have been posting excellent stats in a number of metrics.
The Partenopei are clocking 2.46 xG and 19.50 shots per 90 minutes in Italy, while their attempts p/90 in the Champions League for the campaign so far stands at an even more impressive 20.5.
Unsurprisingly, Napoli have been drawing plenty of cards from frustrated opponents this season. Rangers collected seven cards when they hosted the Italians in September.
Rangers’ stats from the Scottish Premiership this season are overwhelmingly positive, though their domestic efforts are best ignored given their dire Champions League performances.
In the UCL, the Gers have been shipping a huge 21.3 attempts per game while conceding an average of 4.0 games per contest. Indeed, no club in the competition’s Group Stage has conceded more goals than Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s strugglers so far. Napoli mustered 25 attempts when they visited Ibrox Stadium in September.
Player Shots and Shots on Target
Napoli have been purring in attack on multiple fronts this season and several of their players are carrying excellent individual numbers in the shooting department in Serie A (see table).
In the Champions League, Georgian sensation Khvicha Kvaratskhelia (5.3 p/90), Piotr Zielinski (3.1) and Hirving Lozano (3.6) have been among the standouts. Skipper Giovanni di Lorenzo has also been good for 1.5 shots per 90 minutes from right back. He was one of ten different Napoli players to muster attempts against Rangers last month.
As one of the Premiership’s dominant forces, Rangers have a clutch of players all performing well in shooting metrics this term, though Ryan Kent (1.6 shots per 90) has been their most threatening player in the Champions League followed by Antonio-Mirko Colak (1.3).
Kent managed to get one shot away against Napoli in Glasgow last month, while veteran midfielder Scott Arfield racked up two attempts the same evening.
Player Goals and Assists
Khvicha Kvaratskhelia has been one of football’s biggest breakout stars this season and the winger has chipped in with eight goal contributions (5G, 3A) in 11 Serie A appearances and five (2G, 3A) in four runouts in the Champions League.
Giacomo Raspadori has been something of a Champions League specialist this season, notching four goals and an assist in just two starts, while Piotr Zielinksi has three goals and two assist in the competition so far.
Antonio-Mirko Colak has been a sharp-shooter for Rangers in the Premiership this season, hitting the net ten times in just 11 appearances, while skipper James Tavernier is joint-top of the assists charts with Ryan Kent (five each).
Rangers have only scored one goal in four Champions League Group A assignments this term however, and that effort was notched by Scott Arfield is a 7-1 loss to Liverpool.
Napoli’s disciplinary record has been relatively clean this season and they have collected just six cards in four Champions League fixtures since August.
Juan Jesus did commit three fouls and was booked on his first UCL start against Ajax on October 12 and the 31-year-old looks like Napoli’s best card candidate this evening when he continues to fill in for the injured Amir Rrahmani.
Elsewhere, Giovanni Di Lorenzo (1.18 fouls per 90) and Eljif Elmas (1.21 fouls per 90) could be worth pricing, though pickings are slim in the card department for Napoli overall.
Rangers Cards Drawn
Ryan Kent has been Rangers’ most-fouled player in both the Premiership (2.21) and Champions League this season (1.8) and the winger will hope to have a chance or two to run at Di Lorenzo.
Malik Tillman (fouled 1.36 times p/90) could test serial fouler Jesus if he manages to break into central areas, while Steven Davis (fouled 1.35 times per 90) could draw a challenge or two from Elmas.
However, it might be savvier to fill your bet builders with card candidates from Rangers’ ranks instead this evening.
Match-Ups to watch
Juan Jesus vs Malik Tillman
Giovanni Di Lorenzo vs Ryan Kent
Eljif Elmas vs Steve Davis
Bettors can really take their pick from a number of excellent card opportunities in the Rangers team this evening. In midfield, John Lundstram, who has been booked twice in the Premiership and twice in the Champions League, was cautioned against Napoli in Glasgow in September.
James Tavernier (four cards total) also had his name taken by the referee last month, while James Sands saw red in the same game. The defender has gathered four cards in his last four appearances for the Gers in all competitions.
Napoli Cards Drawn
Clever Russian schemer Stanislav Lobotka has been fouled 2.92 times per 90 minutes in Serie A this season and 2.3 times per appearance in the Champions League. The 27-year-old faces a physical test against John Lundstram in Naples.
Khvicha Kvaratskhelia (fouled 2.13 times per 90) is near unstoppable at the moment and James Tavernier will have to use the nastier elements of his game to limit the Georgian’s impact.
Tricky winger Matteo Politano (4.07 dribbles p/90) should have the beating of James Sands when he carries the ball into central areas. The Rangers defender was in panic mode when the teams last met and he could be again this evening.
Match-Ups to watch
John Lundstram vs Stanislav Lobotka
James Tavernier vs Khvicha Kvaratskhelia
James Sands vs Matteo Politano
This should be a cracking game, unless you’re a Rangers fan most likely (Sorry), I think they’re in for a long night.
Keep your stakes sensible if you’re having a bet on the game.