Wednesday September 13 2017
Zapata: ‘Napoli treated me badly’

Sampdoria striker Duvan Zapata “did not feel very well treated” by Napoli - “I trained alone for two months”.

The Colombian international joined the Blucerchiati in a club record €21m deal last month, having spent the previous two seasons on loan with Udinese.

“I was locked in a hotel in Milan just before,” Zapata recalled of his transfer, speaking to Il Secolo XIX.

“I prayed for [Samp President Massimo] Ferrero to fulfil his promise of signing me and he did. I didn’t feel very well treated by Napoli.

“When they value you as highly as they did me, they should follow you, make you feel important. Like Ferrero did.

“I trained alone for two months though, and I didn’t even play a friendly. They were hard weeks.

“Anyway, it’s over and I’m happy now.”

Zapata was also asked for his first impressions of Coach Marco Giampaolo.

“Good, he’s a Coach with clear ideas. He immediately makes you understand what he wants, and that’s crucial.

“Is he like Maurizio Sarri? I couldn’t say, I never trained with Sarri. As I said, I almost didn’t exist as far as Napoli were concerned.”

The striker started his career with America de Cali, which had its assets frozen due to the ownership’s connection to drug cartels.

With Narcos currently a huge hit on Netflix, the 26-year-old was asked about the drug trade in his homeland.

“I don’t watch it,” Zapata replied when specifically asked about Narcos.

“A lot of the stories they tell are true, but there are other more realistic Colombian series. Narcos is made for gringos, it’s a commercial product.

“Suffice to say they cast a Brazilian as Escobar, is that realistic? El Chapo, El Patron del mal, El Cartel de los Sapos… those are more realistic.

“I played for America de Cali, the drug traffickers’ team and in those years they had their accounts frozen for the investigations.

“They couldn’t cash the money from sales or make signings. There were several payment problems for we players too.

“Unfortunately that’s how Colombia was, but it’s quite different now. We’ve taken so many steps forward and today it’s a different country.

“It’s where I’ll go back to.”