Gonzalo Higuain scored two goals and converted a penalty as Napoli bounced back from a goal down to claim a 4-2 win over Lazio at the San Paolo on Sunday afternoon.
The Biancocelesti were forced to play the majority of the second-half with ten men after Lorik Cana was sent off for a second yellow card but they did come close to making a comeback.
The Azzurri started off the better of the two teams wit their fast pace attacks that saw Lorenzo Insigne stink the side netting of Lazio’s goal.
Gonzalo Higuain then burst in the direction of the box but he was brought down on the edge of the D following a challenge from Cana. Napoli however failed to take advantage of the set-piece as it went out wide.
Lazio took the lead against the run of play when Senad Lulic burst into the box, dummied Raul Albiol and slotted the ball across Pepe Reina on 20 minutes.
The former Liverpool goalkeeper made a crucial save with his legs ten minutes later as he rushed off his line and blocked an angled shot by Felipe Anderson at the near post.
Napoli were doing well to ply the pressure and Valon Behrami tried to level things up with a powerful half-volley on the edge of the box, however, his effort sailed over the crossbar.
Six minutes before the break Higuain delivered a delicious ball to Insigne, who was lingering on the opposite flank. The pint-sized player ran a few yards forward before slicing a daisy-cutter that sailed just over the bar.
The hosts did get their equalizer just before the break and through an incredible long-range goal strike by Dried Mertens, who drove the ball into the top right corner.
Things went well in favour of Rafael Benitez’s side at the restart when Lazio were reduced to ten men following a second yellow card for Cana for a foul on Mertens inside the box. Higuain stood up to make it 2-1 from the penalty spot with a well-taken strike.
Napoli seized the extra man advantage and they added their third goal of the afternoon through an impressive volley smashed home by Higuain.
Ogenyi Onazi did pull one back in the final ten minutes of the encounter with a defence splitting run that saw him nutmeg Reina and slot the ball into the back of an open net.
Helder Postiga thought he had secured an impressive comeback for Lazio when he put the ball into the back of the net on 89 minutes, only to see it ruled out for offside.
Higuain wrapped up the win and his hat-trick in the final minute of stoppage time when he got the better of Anderson and slotted the ball past a helpless Etrit Berisha.