AC Milan recorded a narrow victory in the top match against Napoli late on Sunday evening. Stefano Pioli's team, where Tijjani Reijnders was missing due to a suspension, only needed a goal from Theo Hernández. The left back benefited from a beautiful assist from Rafael Leão: 1-0. With the victory, Milan maintains its connection with Juventus in third place. Reigning champion Napoli is a very disappointing ninth.
Napoli started strongly and seemed to take the lead in the tenth minute, when Khvicha Kvaratskhelia delivered the ball dangerously in front of the goal. Giovanni Simeone came sliding towards the ball, but shot narrowly wide.
Fifteen minutes later, Rafael Leão broke the game open with a beautiful through ball. The Portuguese appreciated Theo Hernández's running action from the sidelines. The excited left back cleverly tapped the ball past goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini: 1-0.
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A few minutes later, Leão tried it himself from quite a distance. The Milan left winger's shot headed for the top corner, but Gollini had a good reflex.
The home team had nothing to fear from Napoli in the remainder of the first half, but still suffered a setback. Davide Calabria suffered a muscle injury and was replaced by Alessandro Florenzi.
After the break, Napoli came out of his shell a little more. Kvaratskhelia fired an effort from distance after just under an hour, which was blocked by Simon Kjaer. Referee Daniele Doveri did not want to hear about the appeal for handball. A few minutes later, Matteo Politano tried to dribble in from the right. The substitute's attempt went narrowly wide of Milan goalie Mike Maignan's goal.
Losing the ball in Napoli's build-up gave Leão a huge chance to make it 2-0 in the seventieth minute. The star striker cut back to his right leg on the left flank and looked for the far bottom corner, but pushed the ball inches wide.
In Napoli's final offensive, things could have ended badly for Milan. Napoli claimed a penalty eleven minutes before the end, when Giacomo Raspadori was grabbed by Matteo Gabbia with his back to goal. The Milan defender got away with it.
A minute before the end, a cross from Napoli substitute Jesper Lindstrøm ended up on the post via Jan-Carlo Simic's block. The visitors continued to press and demanded another penalty in stoppage time, when the ball hit the outstretched arm of MIlan substitute Yunus Musah. The VAR called Doveri to the side, but the referee did not award a penalty to Napoli after viewing the images. This is how the Milanese won.
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