NEWS
Saturday May 10 2014
Benitez calls for Napoli patience

Rafa Benitez admits he wants to win at Napoli, but “it can seem like a duty. That’s not written in my contract.”

The Partenopei visit Sampdoria on Sunday at 14.00 UK time (13.00 GMT), click here for a match preview.

“This season has been positive considering all we have done. We could’ve done better and that’s what we will try to do next term,” said the Coach in his Press conference.

“We must be positive in our ambitions, but not go overboard, as otherwise we risk embarrassment. We need consistency, that is what is required to get close to first place.

“I am not afraid to say I want to win something at Napoli, but the problem is that it can seem like a duty, but that’s not written in my contract.

“We are the 20th richest club in the world, behind another four Italian sides. That is the reality of the situation. We are not afraid to face anyone, but there are other clubs with greater revenue.

“There are still two games to go in this campaign and our players need to focus on those performances, as they can earn confirmation at Napoli, a new opportunity or a World Cup spot.

“Based on what I see, our choices for next season could yet change. Some new players will arrive over the summer, but I don’t know how many.

“We can improve in all areas and I know for sure the club is already working on it. Things like the training ground can make the difference to attract new players and convince them to stay.”

This is a special day for Napoli, as on May 10 1987 they won the first Scudetto.

“Have we started a new winning era? More than victories we have to think about what needs to be done,” said Benitez.

“Today is 27 years since the first Scudetto and to win we need a strong structure that can attract the players we need.

“I speak to the President often and to Riccardo Bigon about the transfer strategy. We are in sync on what needs to be done.

“The Champions League is an opportunity to grow further as a club and not just on the transfer market.”

Napoli won the Coppa Italia last week, but that Final with Fiorentina was overshadowed by the shooting of fan Ciro Esposito, who remains in hospital in critical condition.

The police investigation is continuing amid reports it was an ambush orchestrated by Roma ultras, all wearing motorcycle helmets, and there could be a second shooter other than arrested Daniele De Santis.

Meanwhile, Napoli are ordered to play two games behind closed doors due to the incidents surrounding that Final.

“As a Coach it is my responsibility to talk about football, but we don’t want to see what happened in Rome ever again.

“There are people injured and I wish them a speedy recovery. Having said that, we should concentrate on the sport to avoid these events.

“I am often asked to compare Serie A with English or Spanish football. Our responsibility is to think of football, so remember the Coppa Italia Final, which was a wonderful game.

“For the rest, it is up to the authorities to deal with it. All we can do is offer an opinion if asked. Personally, I’ve never played a game behind closed doors before. It’s an ugly message to send out.

“We must lead by example, focusing only on football and not creating so much tension.”

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