Napoli survived a second-half fightback from Brescia to move into fourth place in Serie A with a 2-1 home win on Sunday as Mario Balotelli opened his account for the visitors.
Carlo Ancelotti’s side held a two-goal lead at halftime thanks to strikes from Dries Mertens and Kostas Manolas, but Balotelli pulled one back as Brescia rallied after the break.
The result leaves Napoli in fourth place on 12 points, six behind leaders Inter Milan, while Brescia are down in 14th on six points.
Mertens’s powerful finish put the hosts ahead early on before Manolas, who had an earlier goal disallowed for handball, doubled their advantage with a glancing header in first-half stoppage time.
Brescia’s 19-year-old midfielder Sandro Tonali looked to have pulled one back in style with a long-range screamer before it was chalked off for a foul in the build-up following a Video Assistant Referee (VAR) review.
Balotelli scored his first goal for his hometown club when he rose to head in a Tonali corner with 23 minutes remaining, but Brescia could not find a leveller despite a period of sustained pressure in the closing stages.
Dzeko keeps Roma on course, Lazio thrash Genoa
Edin Dzeko’s goal secured a 1-0 win for AS Roma away to Lecce on Sunday to send them fifth in Serie A as Lazio blew away Genoa in Rome.
Bosnian striker Dzeko headed in Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s cross for his fourth goal of the season in the second half to ensure that Paulo Fonseca’s side immediately returned to winning ways after their home defeat by Atalanta on Wednesday.
Aleksandar Kolarov had the chance to double the score from the penalty spot with 10 minutes remaining but was denied by a superb save from Lecce goalkeeper Gabriel.
Roma are fifth in the standings on 11 points but their city rivals Lazio are right behind them on 10 after beating struggling Genoa 4-0 at the Stadio Olimpico.
Sergej Milinkovic-Savic and Stefan Radu struck in the first half before substitute Felipe Caicedo and Ciro Immobile were on target after the break.
Elsewhere, Stefano Okaka's first-half header gave Udinese a 1-0 win at home to Bologna and Cagliari were held to a 1-1 draw at home to Hellas Verona.