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Serie A season review: Napoli shock the established order

Napoli had not won a Scudetto since 1990 but won 21 of their first 24 games in the Serie A season to rack up a lead at the top of the table that would prove insurmountable to their rivals.

The Blues were top for all but two of the season’s 38 gameweeks and were both the highest scorers with 77 goals scored and had the best defensive record with just 28 conceded. 

Luciano Spalletti’s side amassed an identical home and away record, with 14 wins, three draws and two defeats at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona and on the road. 

Victor Osimhen and Khvicha Kvaratskhelia were key to the efforts of the champions, netting 26 and 12 goals respectively while the latter also chipped in with 10 assists. 

Osimhen finished the season as top scorer and Kvaratskhelia the top assist maker in the division. 

Napoli managed to wrap up the title with five games to spare, securing their third top-flight title in the club’s history.

Recent champions could not mount challenge

Milan won the 2021/22 title in dramatic fashion, holding off rivals Inter, but could not sustain a challenge on top spot this time around. 

A run of three defeats in a row in January was particularly devastating to their chances and saw them drop as low as sixth in the table. 

Stefano Pioli’s men dropped the majority of their points on the road, winning just seven of their 19 away games, recording only the seventh-best record of any side on their travels. 

The Rossoneri were on course to finish in the Europa League spots but a points deduction for Juventus restored them to the Champions League places with three games to go, which they secured by winning their final three matches. 

Rivals Inter took the 2020/21 title and finished a close second to rivals Milan a season later but gave their chance away at the start this time around, losing four of their opening eight games of the season. 

The Nerazzurri dropped as low as ninth during that run and despite rallying, another run of four defeats from five games in March and April officially ended their challenge. 

Lautaro Martinez finished as the second-top scorer in the division with 21 goals, while his side also netted the second-most goals, 71, of any team in Serie A. 

Lazio rounded out the Champions League positions in second alongside Napoli and the two Milan clubs. Lazio’s finish was their highest since winning the Scudetto in 2000.

Points deduction hurts Juventus

Juventus were handed a 15-point deduction for capital gain violations in January that saw them fall from third to 10th, having rallied after a poor start in which they won just three of their opening nine games. 

The Old Lady were handed a reprieve when their deduction was overturned in April, seeing them shoot back up the table to third. 

However a further investigation in May found them guilty again and they were handed a 10-point deduction, dropping them back down the table to seventh position. 

Max Allegri's side did have a chance of securing a Europa League spot on the final day of the season, but Roma’s last-gasp penalty secured victory against Spezia condemned Juve to Europa Conference League football next season, with Atalanta taking up the remaining Europa League spot.

Sampdoria return to Serie B for first time since 2012

Sampdoria had a dismal Serie A campaign, winning just three games all season. 

The strugglers finished with the worst defensive record, conceding 71 goals, having also scored the fewest goals with just 24. 

The side spent all but the second week of the season in the relegation zone and eventually finished 12 points shy of a spot outside of the bottom three. 

The relegation brought to an end a 10-season stint in the top flight for Samp, who recorded five top-half finishes in that time. 

Cremonese will join Sampdoria in Serie B next season, making their stay in the top division a single season one. 

A dramatic final day of the season saw a late penalty decision against Roma deprive Spezia of the point that would have kept them up and they now face a relegation play-off with Verona, due to take place on Sunday. 

The relegation play-off is the first one in the Italian top flight since 2005.

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