Napoli manager Luciano Spalletti says striker Victor Osimhen was not in great shape despite finding the back of the net in the 3-2 home defeat to Fiorentina in Serie A on Sunday.
The Partenopei were dealt a major blow in their quest to win the Scudetto as the visitors scored through Nicolas Gonzalez, Jonathan Ikone and Arthur Cabral to claim maximum points at the Diego Armando Maradona Stadium.
Despite a late rally that saw Napoli score through Dries Mertens and Osimhen – his 12th league goal in 21 appearances, Fiorentina stayed tight at the back to inflict on Napoli their sixth defeat of the season.
“Fiorentina play man against man, Milenkovic pushes far up to chase his man and leaves these spaces we could’ve made more of. If you don’t have the quality to dribble your way out of trouble, then you end up with long balls,” Spalletti told DAZN as quoted by Football Italia.
“Osimhen wasn’t in the best shape as he skipped a couple of training sessions. He did well, but could’ve done better in these physical duels with Igor.”
“This is a very costly defeat and in certain ways was undeserved. Fiorentina played their game and earned the win, but we started strong, then tried to play too long and allowed them to take control of midfield.
“When we conceded the second goal, it all became far more difficult. We have to take some of the blame for what happened, but it’s so disappointing because the fans, the attitude of the whole team throughout the week was the right one.”
On losing five league matches at home, Spalletti said, “They are all to be taken individually, I don’t see any recurring problem we can work on or blame.
“Of course, things change, because clearly now it’s all more difficult. We have no choice other than to be professional, try to win the next game, and see what happens. It is no longer in our hands.”