A much changed Napoli side fell 3-1 to RB Leipzig at the Stadio San Paolo in their Europa League Round of 32 first leg tie.
Maurizio Sarri started a plethora of Partenopei reserves including Adam Ounas, Lorenzo Tonelli, Christian Maggio and Marko Rog, against Leipzig, as he looked to be prioritising Serie A for the remainder of the season.
Ounas had the Partenopei ahead early in the second half with his first ever goal for Napoli, but Timo Werner equalised for the away side before Bruma completed a 13 minute comeback from the Germans. Werner got his second in time added on.
The pair will face off in a week’s time in Germany with Napoli in need of at least a two-goal victory if they are to have any chance of qualification.
It was Leipzig who had the first chance of the game through Werner, who got on the end of a deep corner, but his shot on goal was beaten away by Pepe Reina.
The Leipzig No.11 looked in fine form as he fizzed another effort past the Napoli post.
Despite dominating possession, Napoli looked lethargic and struggled to threaten the Bundesliga side’s backline.
Looking dangerous on the counter, both Bruma and Yussuf Poulsen got beyond the Partenopei defence.
Konrad Laimer was next up to try his luck, but a toe-poked finished was just off target.
Leipzig started the second half as they ended the first and could have taken the lead as Werner flashed a shot over the crossbar from just inside the box.
Then, every much against the run of play, Napoli surged forward through Rog, who then found Ounas on the right and his low drive across goal found the far corner.
A determined Leipzig side didn’t let the goal shake their gameplan and almost equalised through Poulsen, but Napoli had the outstretched leg of Reina to thank as he swiped the ball away.
The Germans did get their goal just after the hour after a mistake from Amadou Diawara gifted the ball to Kevin Kample, who then found Werner with a low cross and the striker fired past Reina from close range.
Napoli should have gotten themselves back into the lead but for a good save from Peter Gulacsi on Lorenzo Insigne.
But the Leipzig comeback was complete on 74 minutes as a long ball saw Poulsen race into the penalty box, before finding Bruma unmarked for a tap in.
From there, Napoli tried to get the equalising goal, but rarely threatened the Leipzig defence, before the tie got a lot harder for the home side as Werner grabbed his second go the game in the 93rd minute.