Walter Mazzarri feels “Napoli were in charge” at the Juventus Stadium and it all went wrong when the Bianconeri changed for a corner.
The 2-0 result was decided in the space of 120 seconds, as Martin Caceres came off the bench to nod in a corner and moments later Paul Pogba’s volley sealed the scoreline.
“Andrea Barzagli tended to go in to the box, but they changed and Caceres went to jump instead of someone else and our marker didn’t notice. We paid for that slight lack of concentration,” said the Coach.
“I complimented my team, as I’m happy with the way they played and kept possession in Turin. It’s a shame we lost, but if we continue with this attitude and belief then we can go far.
“Playing away to Juventus is very difficult. Apart from the long ball for Alessandro Matri we weren’t really struggling and I got the sensation Juve wouldn’t hurt us, but then this goal came from a corner. I knew the only way probably to score against us was from a corner and that proved to be the case.”
Mazzarri was asked why he did not opt to make substitutions earlier, namely Under-21 international Lorenzo Insigne.
“I did hope to get the game back on track when Goran Pandev had that counter-attack for Insigne, but when it’s written then it cannot be changed. I have no regrets and had no reason to substitute anyone at that point. We were controlling the match and not running any risks, so…
“We even hit the crossbar with Edi Cavani and put in a great performance. Up until Juventus took the lead, we were in charge.”
Napoli had the strongest defence going in to this top of the table showdown, but they are now three points adrift of Juventus.
“We have improved and during the game I was convinced we would only risk anything on a set play, where Andrea Pirlo is a master. We were moving the ball around well and playing good football. Now we hope to do well against Chievo.”