MILAN (Reuters) - Napoli's recent results suggest they are running out of steam with less than half the season gone but coach Maurizio Sarri says his side are still full of beans.
Renowned for their free-scoring form and stylish approach work, Napoli have managed a paltry three goals in their last five league outings and missed a chance to go back to the top of Serie A when they were held 0-0 at home to Fiorentina on Sunday.
Sarri, though, said he saw an improvement over recent performances, particularly the 2-1 defeat to Feyenoord on Wednesday which ended the club's interest in this season's Champions League.
"I'm relieved after this match because I saw that the team has found its desire again, its motivation and we had a good number of shots on goal," he said.
"Unlike the last games, we got better in the second half and we dominated. We may have missed our chances but we are on the right road."
After winning their first eight league games of the season, Napoli's following eight games have produced a more modest four wins, three draws and a defeat.
"The data shows that in physical terms we are much better than we were in October when we were winning all of our games," said Sarri.
"We played our football and in the second half, we moved well off the ball which is the key," he said. "Our finishing was off but we will start scoring again.
"I saw a healthy Napoli and if we had won 1-0, everyone would be saying that we are back on form again."
(Writing by Brian Homewood in Berne; editing by Clare Fallon)