Napoli win closes gap to three
Napoli took advantage of AC Milan's failure to beat Genoa as they closed the gap at the top of Serie A to just three points with a 2-0 win over Cesena. With Milan only taking a point back to the capital following a 1-1 draw, Walter Mazzarri's men took full advantage as a goal in each half put second-bottom Cesena to bed.
The in-form Edinson Cavani put them in front with his 17th goal of the season, with Jose Ernesto Sosa confirming the win in injury time. Napoli were quick out of the blocks and Francesco Antonioli did well to fist away a fizzing corner from Ezequiel Lavezzi, before Cavani opened the scoring in the 13th minute. Christian Maggio set the goal up, squaring from the left and finding the waiting Uruguayan who did the rest.
Luis Jimenez thought he had put Cesena level after 22 minutes, only for the flag to have gone up before he tucked away, with the same player then breaking into the box but shooting high and wide.
The trickery of Lavezzi was proving too much for Cesena to handle, though, and his creativity could have put Napoli 2-0 up before the break had Juan Camillo Zuniga kept his composure while running on to a stunning pass. Napoli remained a threat after the break and should have doubled their lead in the 48th minute.
Lavezzi crossed in from the right and Christian Maggio got a header in on goal, which, despite the best efforts of Antonioli, was proven on replays to have crossed the line. Determined not to rue their misfortune, Napoli pressed on and Cavani missed a golden chance when he headed over from close range, while Antonioli made a wonder save to keep out Salvatore Aronica following a scramble in the box.
With eight minutes to go Cesena had their first legitimate chance with Erjon Bodgani heading over when well placed. Moments later Napoli deservedly wrapped things up when Giuseppe Mascara crossed the ball in for Sosa to tap in the back of the net.