Napoli kept their title hopes alive with a 4-2 win over Udinese on Wednesday as champions Juventus’ path to a seventh consecutive Serie A title was stalled 1-1 at Crotone.
Nigerian forward Simy grabbed the equaliser for relegation-threatened Crotone after 65 minutes with a spectacular overhead bicycle kick with shades of that scored by Cristiano Ronaldo in the Champions League in Turin last month.
“We didn’t do so well tonight, even though the guys did everything possible,” said Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri.
Napoli came from behind twice to cut the gap on Juventus to four points with five games remaining including next Sunday’s top of the table clash between the two teams in Turin.
Maurizio Sarri’s side were given an early scare at home with Czech Jakub Jankto putting Udinese ahead after 41 minutes.
Lorenzo Insigne pulled Napoli back just before the break only for Swedish midfielder Svante Ingelsson to again give Udinese the advantage ten minutes into the second half.
But Raul Albiol, Arkadiusz Milik and Lorenzo Tonelli all scored in a ten-minute spree in the second half to condemn Udinese to their 20th defeat of the season — and tenth in a row.
“We are mathematically second, the goal is reached, now we can have fun,” said Sarri.
“Obviously it’s difficult to go to Turin and try to get the victory, as in terms of strength in depth, I think Juventus are the most complete team in Europe.
Napoli had fallen six points adrift of the leaders after last weekend’s goalless draw at AC Milan with the champions closing in on the title.