Cavani the man on the spot
Edinson Cavani's late penalty clinched a 2-1 win over AIK Solna and sent Napoli through to the knockout stages of the Europa League.
Last Updated: 22/11/12 10:44pm
Edinson Cavani held his nerve to convert a late penalty to clinch a 2-1 win over AIK Solna and send Napoli through to the knockout stages of the Europa League.
Blerim Dzemaili set Napoli on their way to the last 32 in the 19th minute but Helgi Danielsson headed home an equaliser 16 minutes later.
A fractious second half saw Salvatore Aronica dismissed for a professional foul five minutes from time but Cavani stepped up to clinch qualification from the penalty spot three minutes into stoppage time.
The hero for Napoli had also had a hand in his side's first goal, finding Dzemaili on the left wing before the Swiss midfielder volleyed home.
AIK reacted well, though, and Napoli would soon surrender their narrow advantage.
With 35 minutes played, Viktor Lundberg produced the killer ball that Danielsson met for the equalising header.
The deadlock did not suit Cavani and he took it upon himself to open the game up in the final 20 minutes.
Ivan Turina was lucky to get to the Uruguayan's fierce stab from six yards before Dzemaili smashed the ball against the Solna stopper, who parried expertly.
Mohamed Bangura, the Swedes' bright spark throughout, wriggled clear to shave the crossbar with a speculative drive and it looked like the game would finish level as it moved into the closing stages.
But after Aronica hacked Bangura down to see red, AIK began to pour forward in search of a last-gasp winner.
There was to be a late goal, too, though it came at the other end. Per Karlsson conceded a penalty deep into stoppage time with a foul on Cavani, who stepped up to wrap up qualification with a game to spare.