Cagliari 0 Napoli 5: Hamsik edges closer to century in five-star display
Marek Hamsik moved onto 99 Serie A goals for Napoli as Maurizio Sarri's side moved four points clear at the top of table with a 5-0 thrashing of Cagliari in Sardinia.
With Juventus' clash against Atalanta postponed due to snow in Turin on Sunday, Napoli were able to increase their advantage over the Bianconeri a day later.
Cagliari display were picked apart by the leaders, with Allan and Lorenzo Insigne their tormentors in-chief.
Allan's marauding run just before the half hour brought the game's opening goal, his pinpoint cross met by Jose Callejon, the Spain international guiding the ball past Alessio Cragno.
Napoli continued to attack their hosts and as half-time beckoned they double their lead, Dries Mertens making amends for an earlier miss with his 16th goal of the season.
Sustained pressure in Cagliari's penalty area eventually saw the ball drop to Insigne and his dangerous delivery was touched beyond Cragno by the feintest of finishes from Mertens.
— Official SSC Napoli (@sscnapoli) February 26, 2018
Just after the hour Hamsik edged closer to a century of top-flight goals for the Partenopei with a curling effort from 18 yards out.
Insigne led a swift counter attack down the Napoli right before playing in his captain, Hamsik making no mistake to stand on the brink another milestone.
He was denied the chance to reach three figures, though, as Insigne stepped up to convert a 72nd-minute penalty after Leandro Castan had handled.
Full-back Mario Rui put the icing on the cake for the visitors in the final minute with a superb free-kick.
Key Opta Facts:
- Napoli have scored with five different players in a Serie A match for the first time since March 2012, also against Cagliari.
- Only against Sampdoria in May 2017 have Jose Callejon, Dries Mertens, Marek Hamsik and Lorenzo Insigne scored in the same Serie A match for Napoli.
- Napoli have scored 72 goals in their last 26 away matches in Serie A (2.8 for match on average).
- Dries Mertens is the leading Belgian goalscorer in the top-five European Leagues in 2017-18 (16 goals). Mertens has netted six goals in his last six Serie A matches.
- Allan has been directly involved in eight goals in Serie A this term (4 goals and 4 assists in 26 appearances), equalling his best season in terms of goals involvement (2015-16 in 35 matches).