Napoli faces Roma for first time since supporter was shot dead

A banner is displayed in the neighborhood of Scampia on the day Napoli fan Ciro Esposito died. 

Laura Lezza/Getty Images

Security will be tight when Roma meets Napoli on Saturday for the first time since clashes that led to a fan’s death from a shooting before the Italian Cup final in May.

Roma fans have been barred from traveling to Naples for the game but there are still concerns of reprisal attacks.

Napoli fan Ciro Esposito died 50 days after he was allegedly shot by Roma fan Daniele De Santis. An investigation over the shooting is ongoing.

The match will kick off at 3 p.m. local time, an earlier-than-usual start time for matches on Saturdays in Serie A, as a precautionary measure to avoid violence.

Roma is planning to make the short trip to Naples by airplane rather than bus, and the squad’s hotel is being kept secret.

”We’ve been making appeals and releasing precautionary messages for months,” Roma midfielder Daniele De Rossi said. ”It’s going to be a risky day. … I just hope that things calm down.”

Napoli coach Rafa Benitez didn’t want to discuss the violence concerns.

”I’m only concerned with the football that is played,” Benitez said. ”I hope it’s just a regular football match and I’m only focusing on the technical aspects.”