Osimhen comes off bench to help Napoli win 4-0 at Lecce and close in on Milan teams

Sat, Sep 30, 2023
Soccer News (AP)

Osimhen comes off bench to help Napoli win 4-0 at Lecce and close in on Milan teams

MILAN (AP) - Victor Osimhen came off the bench to help Napoli win 4-0 at Lecce in Serie A on Saturday as the defending champions notched four goals for the second straight match.

Osimhen, who had been angered by the club following a social media post this week, doubled Napoli's lead early in the second half. Leo Ostigård, Gianluca Gaetano and Matteo Politano also got on the scoresheet.

Napoli moved a point behind league leader Inter Milan and AC Milan, which were playing against Salernitana and Lazio, respectively, later.

It was a second straight defeat for Lecce, which was unbeaten before Tuesday's 1-0 loss at Juventus and had won its previous four home matches.

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Napoli had ended a three-match winless run with a 4-1 win over Udinese midweek but coach Rudi Garcia opted to rest Osimhen on Saturday ahead of Wednesday's Champions League match against Real Madrid.

Napoli took the lead in the 16th minute when Piotr Zielinski floated a free kick from the left to the back post and Ostigård headed it into the top corner for his first Serie A goal.

Garcia brought on Osimhen at halftime and the forward had an instant impact as he found the back of the net just six minutes later. Much of the credit has to go to Khvicha Kvaratskhelia, who cut in from the left and lifted a perfect ball onto the head of Osimhen at the back post.

It was Osimhen's fifth goal in seven league matches this season. The 24-year-old was the top goalscorer in Serie A last season.

Gabriel Strefezza thought he had got Lecce back into the match seven minutes later but his effort was ruled out following a handball by Nikola Krstovic in the buildup.

Gaetano was brought on for his season debut with seven minutes remaining and he scored shortly afterward with a strike from the edge of the area.

He also won a penalty after being tripped by Ylber Ramadani. Politano, who had been given the ball by Osimhen, struck it into the bottom left corner.

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