Napoli earned a comfortable 2-0 victory over Frosinone at the Stadio Benito Stirpe in Serie A on Sunday.
Dries Mertens opened the scoring in fine style, curling home a sublime free kick from the edge of the box into the top corner to hand Carlo Ancelotti's side the lead, after a lively start to the game in which Napoli's early pressure paid off.
The visitors pushed to double their advantage late in the second half but Frosinone managed to frustrate Ancelotti's side and keep Napoli within touching distance. In the end Napoli did not have to wait long in the second half before Amin Younes finally added the second with a cool finish.
The Partenopei pushed for a third but incredibly hit the woodwork twice in quick succession, as Jose Callejon saw his effort crash back off the post, before Fabian Ruiz cracked the rebound against the bar. Napoli failed to add the third, but comfortably saw the victory through with minimal late pressure from Frosinone.
Starting XI: Sportiello (5); Goldaniga (5), Ariaudo (6), Brighenti (6); Ghiglione (5), Gori (6), Maiello (6), Valzania (6), Beghetto (5); Pinamonti (6), Trotta (6)
Substitutes: Paganini (5), Dionisi (6), Ciofani (5)
Key Talking Point
Napoli's season is effectively fizzling out towards a disappointingly uneventful climax, with Ancelotti's side sitting comfortably in second place in Serie A but having fallen well short of champions Juventus this term.
The Partenopei saw their hopes of silverware this season dashed after being eliminated from the Europa League by Arsenal, and questions therefore remain over how much intent Napoli will show in their remaining league games this season.
However, Sunday's victory was evidence that Ancelotti's side will not go out with a whimper. Napoli looked full of purpose from the outset, attacking Frosinone with clear intent to impose their superiority, and a fine opening goal from Mertens was due reward.
The Belgian was among the stars who proved what they are capable of for Napoli, particularly in the absence of captain and talisman Lorenzo Insigne at the Stadio Benito Stirpe. Their season may be ending without reward, but the Partenopei will surely come again next season.
Lovely from Mertens. Hopefully that can help the team kick on #Napoli— WRS Napoli (@WRSSerieA) April 28, 2019
Interesting 2 of his 3 starts Younes has scored (Udinese and Frosinone) and his 3rd goal was against Roma. If he keeps on doing this, it is worth giving more players like him more playing time. #Napoli— WRS Napoli (@WRSSerieA) April 28, 2019
One thing that has pleased me is Younes has looked a decent threat down the wing. #Napoli— WRS Napoli (@WRSSerieA) April 28, 2019
Starting XI: Ospina (6); Malcuit (6), Koulibaly (7), Luperto (6), Ghoulam (7); Callejon (7), Zielinski (6), Ruiz Pena (7), Younes (7); Milik (6), Mertens (7*)
Substitutes: Verdi (5), Ounas (5), Albiol (N/A)
STAR MAN - Napoli put on a solid team display on Sunday, but Mertens stole the show in Frosinone. The Belgian struck a sumptuous free-kick to break the deadlock for his side after Napoli had struggled to find the breakthrough with their early pressure.
The Belgian very nearly repeated the trick later in the first half with almost a carbon copy of his earlier effort, as the attacker generally led from the front and proved once more that he can provide special moments to inspire his side.
Napoli host Cagliari at the Stadio San Paolo in their next Serie A outing next Sunday, as they hope to see out the remainder of the season in style.