Lorenzo Insigne could miss first leg against Arsenal
Lorenzo Insigne was originally announced as a starter in Napoli's Round of 16 second leg match against Red Bull Salzburg but was replaced by Dries Mertens prior to kickoff as the Italian striker felt a bit off during warmups.
“Insigne felt a twinge in the warm-up and probably could’ve played, but we preferred not to risk it. The important thing is that Napoli are in the draw for the Europa League quarter-finals.” said Partenopei head coach Carlo Ancelotti in his post-game press conference.
However, Insigne's injury seems to be a little more serious than first thought as the club revealed on their official website today that the Napoli captain will be out for at least three weeks with a thigh injury.
Insigne was not the only one to suffer an injury last night though, with defender Vlad Chiriches and midfielder Amadou Diawara also expected to be missing from action for at least three weeks as well. Chiriches was forced to leave the game early yesterday with what is also believed to be a thigh injury, while Diawara has a problem with his right foot and could be out even longer
The timing could not be worse for the Italians as they were drawn alongside Arsenal earlier today in the UEFA Europa League draw. Napoli will travel to London to take on the Gunners at the Emirates in the first leg on April 11th before hosting the second leg a week later on April 18th.
Insigne is by far the biggest blow, as he has an impressive 13 goals and six assists across all competitions this season so far. While Chiriches and Diawara likely would not have started against Arsenal anyways. However, their absences definitely leave Napoli short-handed and with a lack of depth for the time being.
The three will also likely miss all of Napoli's upcoming Serie A fixtures that include matches against Udinese, Roma, Empoli and Genoa. Currently, the Southerners find themselves in second place in the Italian top flight.