Rudi Garcia has been afforded three matches after the October international break to save his job as Napoli coach after a disappointing start to the 2023/24 season. The Partenopei are fifth in Serie A with 14 points from eight games, but their 3-1 defeat at home to Fiorentina on Matchday 8 angered club president Aurelio De Laurentiis.

After the home performance and loss against Fiorentina, Rudi Garcia is running out of time to demonstrate that he can guide the reigning Serie A champions towards the top of the table.

According to La Gazzetta dello Sport, De Laurentiis spoke to Garcia immediately after the loss to the Gigliati. The 59-year-old has been allowed more to time to turn things around, but he will have to do so in some demanding fixtures.

De Laurentiis not present at meeting with Garcia

Garcia met with some Napoli directors on Monday at the Parker Hotel in Naples, but De Laurentiis was not there in person, deciding to speak to join via video call.

Sporting director Mauro Meluso, head scout Maurizio Micheli, and Antonio Sinicopri decided not to sack the 59-year-old, and give him the chance to bring the Partenopei out of their early-season slump.

It won’t be easy for Garcia to ease the tension at the club though. Napoli are seven points behind Serie A leaders AC Milan, and there has been criticism of the Frenchman’s philosophy. Under Luciano Spalletti, the Neapolitans won the 2022/23 Serie A title in convincing style, whereas they appear to lack fighting spirit and style of play now, and the former AS Roma coach’s substitutions against Fiorentina raised questions.

Napoli’s Victor Osimhen celebrates. [@sscnapoli]

Garcia will have until the match against AC Milan to prove his worth

Napoli will be back in action after the international break on October 21 to face Hellas Verona at the Stadio Marc’Antonio Bentegodi in Serie A, then play Union Berlin in Germany three days later in the Champions League.

This sequence of games for Garcia to prove himself will end on October 29, when the Partenopei host AC Milan at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona in Serie A. He and Napoli will have negotiate two tricky away trips before hosting a contender for the scudetto, and if he cannot win those games, the sack becomes inevitable.

It will be costly to sack Garcia because Napoli would lose some of the tax benefits they would have had by hiring him, but finishing outside of the Champions League spots at the end of the 2023/24 Serie A season is a greater concern for the Neapolitans.