An injury-hit Napoli lost 2-0 to Granada at the Nuevo Estadio de Los Carmenes in the Europa League’s round of 32 on Thursday night.
The defeat marked another disappointing night for Italian sides in Europe following Juventus’ 2-1 loss at Porto on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, the Azzurri will need a minimum of three goals in the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona in a week’s time to progress in the competition.
After a lot of early knocking, the door opened for the Spaniards midway through the half. Yangel Herrera got himself on the scoresheet after Kenedy had cut inside from the right flank and sent a perfect curled cross towards the opposite side for the Venezuelan as Gennaro Gattuso’s men were down by one in the 19th minute.
It became two goals in two minutes as the provider became the scorer. Matteo Politano lost the ball and Maxime Gonalons took over, passing on to Darwin Machis who eventually sent Kenedy through for the Brazilian to double the lead to finish a delightful counterattack.
As the second half started, Piotr Zielinski was introduced for Politano. A few minutes before the hour mark the Polish midfielder managed to send the ball just above the Granda crossbar.
The hard-working Lorenzo Insigne won a freekick on the left side of the box, taken by Mario Rui and destined precisely for Amir Rrahmani’s head, though he failed to keep his effort down.
That chance came before Napoli’s first and only shot on target in the 87th minute from Victor Osimhen, however, the forward’s effort was easily collected by the goalkeeper.
Napoli remained on the offensive, though their efforts were in vain as they head home with two goals to make up for, and knowing that a Granda goal in Campania will see them in need of four to progress.