Napoli honored Diego Maradona’s memory with a 2-0 win over Rijeka that saw him rise to the top of Group F of the Europa League in the first game since the death of his Argentine icon.
Gennaro Gattuso’s team entered the field wearing Maradona’s No. 10 jersey, which won Napoli’s only Serie A titles in 1987 and 1990, as well as the 1989 UEFA Cup.
“Diego is a legend and he will never die,” Gattuso said after the game.
“Since yesterday you could see that the city breathed a different atmosphere.
“We hope to dedicate something important to him and win a trophy.
“In this city we have talked about it for too many years.”
Napoli made sure fans gathered outside to pay their respects to Maradona, as the current team did not disappoint with an own goal from Armando Anastasio and a simple shot from Hirving Lozano sealed the points.
Napoli are now two points ahead of AZ Alkmaar and Real Sociedad after their goalless draw in the Netherlands.
Compatriot Roma made their way to the round of 16 with a 2-0 win over Romanian Cluj, while Hoffenheim joined them after securing their respective passes to the next round from L.
Previously, Jame Vardy’s last gasp in a thrilling 3-3 in Braga sent Leicester City into the knockout rounds, where they were also joined by Arsenal thanks to their 3-0 win in Molde.
Leicester looked dead and buried when Fransergio put the hosts ahead 3-2 in the first minute of stoppage time, but Vardy sneaked into the back post shortly after to score the goal that put the Premier League team in the last 32.
Brendan Rodgers ‘team leads Group G with 10 points, three ahead of Braga in second place and seven ahead of third AEK Athens with two games to play after the Greeks’ 3-0 loss at home to Zorya Luhansk .
Tottenham Hotspur are tied on nine points with Group J leaders Royal Antwerp after a 4-0 thrashing over the last Ludogorets, who have yet to score a single point.
Spur’s comfortable home win was the scene for an incredible long-range shot by Harry Winks, whose shot from close to the left wing put José Mourinho’s team three goals ahead of a previous double by Carlos Vinícius.
However, Winks admitted to BT Sport after the match that he was not aiming for goal.
“I would love to sit here and say yes, but I have to be honest and say no. I saw Gaz (Gareth Bale) run, ”said the England international.
Lucas Moura completed the scoring in the 73rd minute as the Premier League’s top flightners watch an intriguing London derby with Chelsea in form this weekend.
Lille missed out on qualifying after it could only draw 1-1 with an AC Milan team that lost to the injured Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
The Ligue 1 squad is leading Group H, one point ahead of Milan and with Sparta Prague lurking one point further behind after knocking Celtic out of the competition with a 4-1 win in the Czech Republic.