The former AC Milan striker netted after Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa’s headed clearance from a corner came off the back of his head and deflected in, for the only goal at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona.
Napoli hit the crossbar and the post but could not snatch a point, whilst they saw Piotr Zielinski and Eljif Elmas added to an increasingly lengthy injury list.
Ospina 6; Di Lorenzo 6, Rrahmani 5.5, Juan Jesus 6, Mario Rui 6.5; Demme 5 (’63 Anguissa 5.5), Zielinski 6 (’22 Insigne 5.5); Lozano 5.5 (’63 Politano 6.5), Ounas 6.5, Elmas 6 (’87 Malcuit N/A); Mertens 5 (’63 Petagna 5.5)
Player of the match: Adam Ounas
The Algeria international took some time to get going but grew into the match and was influential in midfield, spreading the play well as Napoli sought to get in behind a stubborn Empoli defence. He almost snatched a late equaliser with a jinking run into the box and looked the most likely to make something happen for the Partenopei.