Why Sarri-ball requires A LOT of patience
Reddit user NotClayMerritt recalls Sarri's first season at Napoli when the team started poorly but scored more than 100 goals at the end
NotClayMerritt wrote: I think ultimately Sarri was MOST of our preferred choices to replace Conte if he wasn't going to stick around for another season. But if his start with Napoli, his first big job, is any indicator, we will need to find patience and remain patient for his first couple of months.
?Here is his start with Napoli [in 2015]:
Match week 1 - Sassuolo 2-1 Napoli
Match week 2 - Napoli 2-2 Sampdoria
Match week 3 - Empoli 2-2 Napoli
Match week 4 - Napoli 5-0 Lazio
Match week 5 - Capri 0-0 Napoli
After 5 games, Sarri's Napoli found themselves sitting 12th at the end of September. In fact, it wasn't until right before Halloween when Sarri and Napoli even cracked the Top 3. After the draw with Capri, Napoli won 9 of their next 10 matches including impressive wins over eventual league winners Juventus, Milan, Fiorentina and Inter before losing 3-2 to Bologna.
Later in that season, after sitting top of the table for 6 straight weeks, Napoli then had a really bad stretch between February and late April. It included losing or drawing 6 of their 11 in that period including big games against Roma, Inter and Juventus and a shock 3-1 loss to then relegation battling Udinese. Also in the same period, they got eliminated in the Round of 32 in Europa League by Villarreal by losing 1-0 away and drawing 1-1 at home.
⚽Sarri's top 5 goalscorers that season were:
Higuain (38 goals, 42 apps - also won Golden Boot in Serie A)
Jose Callejon & Lorenzo Insigne (13 goals each in 47 and 42 apps respectively)
Dries Mertens (11 goals, 40 apps)
Manolo Gabbiandini (9 goals, 30 apps)
Marek Hamsik (8 goals, 46 apps)
?They scored 106 goals as a team in all competitions.
Who honestly knows what this season will bring. It's near impossible to predict. Only two things are for certain. Our squad is much better than any squad Sarri had at Napoli and it's gotten much better with the addition of Jorginho. However, on the flip side, the Premier League is far more competitive and more difficult than Serie A.
Sarri is going to need patience until at least the middle or end of October (just like Morata and Bakayoko). Any criticism of him is really unfair until after that. If we're into November and results are underwhelming then you can absolutely begin to ask questions or raise alarm.
Anyone who covered Serie A or Napoli in 2015 have all mainly said the exact same thing: it may look like a mess in the beginning but once it clicks, we'll look amazing.