Pressure on Napoli coach Rudi Garcia intensifies after late Empoli victory

    Empoli increased the pressure on Napoli head coach Rudi Garcia with a 1-0 win in Serie A.

    Viktor Kovalenko’s injury-time winner gave the visitors a blistering point in Naples and left Garcia in no doubt about how the home fans viewed him after receiving jeers.

    Last year’s champions are fourth after this disappointing defeat.

    Things might have gone differently had the hosts taken two early chances but they were faced with inspired Empoli goalkeeper Etrit Berisha.

    The Albania international deflected Matteo Politano’s shot wide of goal and then failed to head Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa’s corner.

    Napoli thought they had taken the lead in the 27th minute after Giovanni Simeone fired home a shot that was ruled offside.

    Empoli showed they were serious and made two warning shots before the break when Matteo Cancellieri fired wide and then Andrea Ranocchia volleyed inches wide.

    Napoli took some time to get going after the break and then it became apparent that Berisha was in no mood to concede a goal.

    Newcomer Jesper Lindström fired a terrible shot from 20 yards into the top corner, but the goalkeeper made a superb save.

    He then denied Khvicha Kvaratskhelia twice as Napoli continued to knock on the door.

    He first saved the Georgian’s kick and then kicked another low kick.

    It looked like Napoli would be brooding over dropping two points as the game headed into injury time, but things took a turn for the worse when Empoli stole the win.

    In the first minute of stoppage time, Kovalenko found space on the edge of the box and found the far post with a stunning curling shot that beat goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini and sailed wide of the post.

    Napoli had no time to respond and Garcia was left staring into the barrel.

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