Both teams secured 2-1 wins in their opening matches. Arsenal are on a nine-game winning run in all competitions. And manager Arsene Wenger is confident that three points against the Serie A side tonight will leave them in a strong position to reach the Round of 16.
“If we win the second game we know we can qualify,” he said.“I wouldn’t say it is already a decisive game — but it is a game that will have a great bearing on who qualifies.”
Arsenal’s form has been all the more impressive with an injury list that includes Lukas Podolski, Santi Cazorla and Theo Walcott among the players on the sidelines.
But defeating Napoli will be no easy task, as Rafael Benitez’s Stadio San Paolo tenure has started in terrific fashion. Napoli have won five and drawn one of their six Serie A fixtures, and began their Champions League campaign by beating last season’s runners-up, Dortmund.
Christian Maggio (knee) is Benitez’s only absentee, with Gonzalo Higuain set to start against a club he came close to joining in the summer.
Hazard out for Blues
Chelsea will be without injured playmaker Eden Hazard when they play Steaua Bucharest in a Group E clash tonight. Kevin de Bruyne, who failed to impress Jose Mourinho in the League Cup match at Swindon, was also excluded while Fernando Torres made the cut.