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Juventus defeat Napoli to move to top of Serie A

A Simone Zaza goal was enough for the Old Lady to record a 1-0 win in Turin to move ahead of Napoli at the top of the Serie A table by a single point.

Simone Zaza is mobbed by teammates after scoring the winner.

Substitute Simone Zaza scored a dramatic goal two minutes from time to give Juventus a 1-0 win over Napoli on Saturday as they snatched the Serie A lead from their opponents with a 15th league win in a row.

The game, which began with Napoli two points ahead of Juve, appeared to be petering out into a goalless draw when the shaven-headed Zaza found space on the edge of the area, burst forward and fired a left-foot shot past Pepe Reina.

Juventus defender Leonardo Bonucci was also at the centre of the action after he collided with team mate Sami Khedira early on, but he recovered and made a crucial interception to prevent an almost certain Napoli goal and went off injured after halftime.

Napoli had won their last eight games and boasted the league's most prolific attack with 53 goals but veteran goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon barely had a save to make as Juve's defence, the stingiest in the championship, prevailed.

Juan Cuadrado tested Napoli goalkeeper Pepe Reina for the first time after 13 minutes with a long-range shot and Paul Pogba curled a free kick narrowly wide from nearly 30 metres.

A Napoli goal looked on the cards when Elseid Hysaj's cross appeared to be heading straight for Gonzalo Higuaín, unmarked in front of goal, but Bonucci came from nowhere to stick out his leg and deflect the ball out for a corner.

A moment of brilliance from Pogba nearly unlocked the Napoli defence on the hour as he controlled the ball on his chest and slipped the ball inside to Dybala, whose shot flashed over the crossbar.

An anti-climactic stalemate appeared likely until Zaza, heavily criticised for recent performances, produced his moment on inspiration.


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