Napoli put an end to a jittery start under new coach Walter Mazzarri as their 2-0 victory over Braga confirmed their place in the Champions League knockout stage.
Three successive defeats since Mazzarri took over from Rudi Garcia may have knocked confidence but the hosts knew they needed only a draw to prevent their opponents snatching second place in Group C from them.
They could even have afforded a one-goal defeat, as their head-to-head record was superior courtesy of the 2-1 win in Portugal, but a ninth-minute Serdar Saatci own goal was the perfect morale boost for a side which had won just once in the last six games.
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A quickly-taken throw allowed Matteo Politano to break into the right side of the penalty area and his low cut-back was intended for Victor Osimhen.
However, Saatci’s awkward attempted to block the cross only diverted the ball into the ground, up onto the underside of the crossbar and down over the line.
Stung by the early goal Ricardo Horta forced Alex Meret to tip a shot onto the crossbar, while Braga goalkeeper Matheus Magalhaes also denied Piotr Zielinski at his near post.
Osimhen had flown in from Morocco, where he had won African Player of the Year, and he celebrated beating Mohamed Salah to the award by adding Napoli’s second in the 33rd minute.
Natan, a centre-back filling in on the left, surged forward and having found space in the penalty area crossed for the Nigeria international.
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The ball was behind Osimhen but his attempted drag-back diverted it goalwards via his standing leg from six yards and although Matheus got a hand to it he could not prevent it crossing the line.
Braga’s goalkeeper was the busier as he tipped over Politano’s left-footed curler and denied Osimhen a second.
Horta hit the foot of a post with 11 minutes to go but with Real Madrid coming back to beat Union Berlin late on, Braga’s consolation prize was a place in the Europa League.