Thursday October 19 2017
Diawara: ‘I asked to take the penalty’

Napoli’s Amadou Diawara reveals he asked to take the penalty against Manchester City - “I felt it”.

The 20-year-old had never scored a professional goal before, so it was a surprise when he stepped up to take a spot kick in Tuesday night’s Champions League match.

“Yeah, I asked to take it,” Diawara said on Radio Kiss Kiss Napoli.

“After they whistled for the penalty I felt it, I took the ball from [Marek] Hamsik and I asked [Dries] Mertens to let me take it, he said yes.

“I go onto the pitch to have fun, football is a sport, a job for me, but I also want to have fun, even when I step up to that spot.

“I was delighted, it was an inexplicable joy. Obviously I was disappointed by the defeat, but to score the first goal of my career in a stadium like that was nice.

“We could have given more at the start of the game, but we were playing a great team in their home and it wasn’t easy to do what we wanted.

“After half an hour we took the game in our hands. You can suffer against City, just look at the team they are.

“If Mertens had scored his penalty it definitely would have been different, but that’s just how it goes and we’ll take it.”

The Partenopei face Inter at the weekend, a clash of first versus second at the San Paolo.

“It will be a great match. It will give us huge motivation to go out there and get what we want this season, namely the Scudetto. It will be a very important match.

“We’re playing at home and we want to win. We’ve only played eight games, but in the head-to-head games the points are very important.”

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