Feb 16 (Reuters) - A stunning finish from Dries Mertens earned Napoli a 1-0 win at Cagliari that moved them above the Sardinian side and into eighth place in Serie A on Sunday.
Gennaro Gattuso was looking for a reaction from his side after they fell to a shock 3-2 defeat at home by Lecce last weekend, and Mertens’ curling shot on the 65th minute was enough to edge them to victory.
The Belgian's goal was a rare moment of quality in a keenly contested encounter, and moved him to within one goal of Marek Hamsik's club record tally of 121 strikes for the club.
It was the first time Gattuso’s side had kept a clean sheet in the league under his guidance in his ninth game in charge, and the result leaves Napoli eighth on 33 points, one ahead of 11th-placed Cagliari.
Rolando Maran's side are now without a win in their last 10 Serie A games, picking up four draws and six defeats in that time, their worst run of form since an 11-match winless run in April 2015. (Reporting by Alasdair Mackenzie Editing by Christian Radnedge)