Walter Mazzarri focuses Napoli entirely on Sunday’s clash with Roma and assures he “never gave the priority to the Champions League.”
Naturally many questions were about the draw that pits the Partenopei against Chelsea in February’s knockouts.
“We have got to forget all about every game, including last season’s 2-0 win. It’s a whole different ball game now,” said the Coach.
“I never gave the priority to the Champions League, nor did I say that it was a more important competition for us. I always take it one game at a time. Obviously, not having a whole week to prepare for a match does take something away from you, especially in terms of preparing set plays.
“I hope for the next two months that we can work much more with the team and see some better football, which will lead to a few more points.”
Napoli-Roma is known as the Derby del Sud and has always been a passionate affair.
“The Giallorossi have bet on youngsters and I admire Luis Enrique, as he continues with his idea of football and won’t let himself be affected by what others say,” continued Mazzarri.
“It’s only natural that at the start of a new project based on youth, some problems are to be expected and it takes time to develop. Of course, I hope Roma begin finding their form from next week…
“It is going to be a spectacular game, even if I think Roma will change a few things.”
President Aurelio De Laurentiis praised Mazzarri’s work after reaching the Champions League knockouts.
“It was very pleasing. I try to combine good football with results, which is what all Coaches ought to do, because this sport is entertainment. If you play well, the result ought to arrive, but then football is also unpredictable.”
Think you know your Italian football? Share your knowledge, tips and comments to win cash prizes in OLBG's tipster competition - £5,000 monthly.