Napoli vs Real Madrid

, KO: 20:00 Oct 3, 2023, Stadio Diego Armando Maradona
Real Madrid

NAPOLI were always going to suffer a hangover after ending their long wait for the Serie A title but the visit of mighty Real Madrid on Champions League business gives them a chance to get the juices flowing again.

The biggest blow after that epic championship triumph was losing mastermind Luciano Spalletti and successor Rudi Garcia has suffered a few teething troubles, dropping seven points in the first five Serie A fixtures.

But Napoli have clicked into top gear again in the last week, following up a 4-1 home win over Udinese by smashing four past Leece on the road at the weekend to sit just four points off the summit.

The Italian champions also won 2-1 away to Braga in their Champions League opener so things are definitely on the up again, although the club scored a remarkable own goal by mocking star striker Victor Osimhen on their TikTok account.

That led to threats of legal action from the player's agent and a January move could be likely, although Osimhen is still delivering on the pitch and heads into this game having scored in his last two matches.

Napoli will need to have him on top form for this clash with Real Madrid as the Spanish giants have made an impressive start to the new season, winning eight of their nine games in all competitions.

Their only slip so far came in the Madrid derby at the Wanda Metropolitano as Atletico roared to a 3-1 win but Carlo Ancelotti's men bounced back with wins over Las Palmas and Girona to return to the La Liga summit.

Real Madrid were made to sweat in their Champions League opener as Union Berlin held them until the 90th minute at the Bernabeu before Jude Bellingham popped up with the only goal of the game. Thankfully, Ancelotti's side found corners easier to come by than goals, bringing up one of my bets.

The England midfielder has made a spectacular start to his career in Spain and Ancelotti will be hoping the former Borussia Dortmund star can now inspire them to victory at one of the toughest venues in Europe.

How the bookies view it

This is a tough one to call as Napoli were sensational at home in the group stage last year, blowing away Liverpool, Rangers and Ajax. Garcia's side are slight favourites at 17/10 with Betfair while Real Madrid are 13/8 with BetUK and the draw pays 11/4 at SpreadEx. With the passionate home crowd behind them, I'm leaning towards a Napoli win.

Head to head

Real Madrid are unbeaten in their four meetings with Napoli, winning three of those games. They last met in the Champions League six years ago and both matches ended in 3-1 victories for the Spanish giants.

Players to watch

Khvicha Kvaratskhelia was a revelation for Napoli last season but the Georgian has been less effective this season, netting just once in nine appearance. The big Champions League stage might spark him to life again and he's 11/4 with Unibet for anytime scorer. An assist might be more likely but I've yet to see any prices for that market.

The return of Vinicius Junior from injury is a massive boost for Real Madrid and he started the weekend win over Girona after a cameo off the bench against Las Palmas. The Brazilian winger always steps up in big games and he's 9/4 at Bet365 for anytime scorer.

Anything else catch the eye?

We should see goals in this one as both teams like to attack and BTTS is just 8/13 at William Hill while over 2.5 strikes is also tiny at 8/11 with the same firm. You have to go to over 3.5 goals to get decent odds at 15/8 with 888Sport.

These teams are well matched so it should be a close game. That makes the half-time draw worth a punt at 11/8 with 888Sport while McBookie price a one-goal winning margin for either side at 5/4.

Piotr Zielinski is always a goal threat from midfield for Napoli and takes their penalties. So I like 27/25 on offer at Unibet for the Pole just to have a shot on target in this game.

This match between Napoli and Real Madrid will be played on Oct 3, 2023 and kick off at 20:00. Check below for our tipsters best Napoli vs Real Madrid prediction. You may also visit our dedicated betting previews section for the most up to date previews.

Napoli vs Real Madrid Betting Tips & Predictions
Half-time draw
One-goal winning margin
Piotr Zielinski over 0.5 shots on target

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