Belgians abroad: Naples and Dries Mertens, scorer and passer, released by Fiorentina after a crazy match

Despite a goal and an assist from Dries Mertens, Napoli were eliminated Thursday by Fiorentina in the round of 16 of the Italian Cup.

In a match marked by three red cards, the Neapolitans were caught at home 2-5 at the end of extra time. Winners in 2020, Naples and Dries Mertens were hoping to reach the quarter-finals of this Coppa Italia. A goal that took the lead in the 41st minute when Dusan Vlahovic gave ‘La Viola’ the lead. The Partenopei returned in a hurry thanks to the inevitable Dries Mertens. The striker equalized with a superb shot in a time that left no chance for Bartlomie Dragowski (44th, 1-1).

The last Florentine bulwark was sent off three minutes later for a foul as the last man on Elif Elmas, who went alone on goal. The Neapolitans did not take advantage of their numerical superiority in the second act, conceding a goal from the works of Cristiano Biraghi just before the hour mark (58th, 1-2).

The case was further complicated for Napoli with the expulsion of Hirving Lozano (84th), imitated a few minutes later by Fabian Ruiz (90 + 3) for a second yellow card.

While the game was in favor of Fiorentina, Andrea Petagna brought the two teams to a draw on a pass from Dries Mertens (90 + 5, 2-2).

Now nine against ten in extra time, Luciano Spalletti’s team held on for fifteen minutes before breaking three times on goals from Lorenzo Venuti (105 + 1, 2-3), Krzysztof Piatek (108th, 2-4) and Youssef Maleh (119th, 2-5).

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