The build up to this game was pretty substantial. Eagerly anticipated by Serie A purists throughout the international break, the second half certainly didn't disappoint - except maybe for Fiorentina fans.
The first half ended 0-0, Fiorentina playing a pressing game and edging the possession but on balance Napoli probably had the greater chances. After a deft touch, turn and pass from Nikola Kalinić on 17 minutes, Jakub Błaszczykowski; in plenty of space in the area, let fly with a shot, but it was easily saved by Pepe Reina.
It took until 22 minutes for Napoli to register a shot on goal, through captain Marek Hamšík, which was easily saved by Ciprian Tătăruşanu. Just three minutes later, in form Lorenzo Insigne bent a central free kick around the wall, but Tătăruşanu was able to collect again. Fiorentina were fortunate not to concede just before the break when Gonzalo Higuaín was gifted a free header, but was only able to direct it just wide of the post.
Napoli coach Maurizio Sarri must have administered with his team with rocket fuel during his half time team talk, as the home side came out of the blocks with a renewed intensity, and punished the viola within 60 seconds of the kick off. Hamšík played a defense splitting through ball from the midfield, latched onto by Insigne who had left Nenad Tomović for dead. Insigne continued his purple patch with a curling shot that Tătăruşanu had no chance to save.
Fiorentina rallied well, displaying the tenacity that has been so evident in recent weeks. The introduction of Josip Iličić for an ineffective Federico Bernardeschi had immediate effect as the Slovenian chipped a perfectly weighted ball over the top for Kalinić, who got in between the two defenders and finished with the outside of his right foot.
Iličić was to go from Fiorentina's hero to villain when Napoli regained the lead in the space of three minutes, when a defensive mistake allowed Higuaín into a 1 on 1 situation with Tătăruşanu where there was only ever going to be one winner.
The viola didn't give up, but in the end individual mistakes cost them dearly and Napoli were ale to close out the result. After five wins took Fiorentina to the top of the table, this defeat isn't the end of the world BUT with a midweek Europa League game and AS Roma at home next week all will depend on how the team can bounce back from defeat.