Carlo Ancelotti labelled Alex Meret’s red card during Napoli’s 2-1 defeat to Juventus as ‘controversial’ and suggested that the decision was the turning point in the match.
Meret, starting just his ninth Serie A match between the sticks for Napoli, was given his marching orders after just 25 minutes following a challenge on Cristiano Ronaldo. Juventus capitalised on their man advantage and scored twice before the interval through Miralem Pjanic and Emre Can.
On closer inspection, there appeared to minimal, if any, contact during the Napoli goalkeeper’s challenge and Ancelotti told Sky Sports Italia, as per Goal:
“It’s controversial. He certainly didn’t catch him, I can accept it was punished for an attempted tackle. Then you have to take into account where the ball was going, where Allan was.
“Seeing as we have VAR technology, why not view it in totality? It was not a very clear red, as Cristiano might not have been able to get on to that ball anyway. It was going towards the corner flag.
“Meret did not touch him. After that, you have to consider all the other elements. The red certainly changed the game. The only two things we got wrong were the positioning on the wall for Pjanic’s free-kick and the corner marking on Emre Can.”
Juventus were also reduced to ten men early in the second half and Napoli rallied back, narrowly missing out on a point after a late penalty miss from Lorenzo Insigne.
Ancelotti recognised his side’s superiority and claimed that it demonstrates exac
tly what I Partenopei could achieve.
“I was genuinely surprised by how superior we were to Juve once it went to 10 against 10. It showed how much quality there is in this team, we’ve got to become more and more convinced of our own capabilities.”