Former Napoli man Omar El Kaddouri reveals he sparked a bomb scare with ex-teammate Gonzalo Higuain and wrecking a photographer’s car.
The Morocco international is now at PAOK Salonika, but was on the Napoli books from 2012 to January 2017, also with loan spells at Torino and Empoli.
“The level in Greece isn’t great. The top five or six teams aren’t bad, but for the rest, the level is pretty low,” El Kaddouri told CalcioNapoli24.it.
“Obviously I miss Italy, as I played there for nine years, but there are no regrets. Maurizio Sarri always wanted to keep me and refused when I asked to go out on loan or to be sold. He said I’d have the chance to start in Serie A, but I never did, except for in the Europa League.
“I would spend a lot of time off the field with Dries Mertens, Faouzi Ghoulam, Kalidou Koulibaly, Jorginho and Pepe Reina. When we had a day off, we’d all rent a boat together and go to (the islands of) Ischia or Procida.”
El Kaddouri reveals his friendship with Higuain resulted in a potentially-dangerous prank.
“We were getting on the plane at the Capodichino airport for an away match. I had two backpacks, I can’t even remember why. We were going up the emergency stairs to avoid meeting people and were accompanied by the security staff.
“Higuain and I threw one of these backpacks down the stairs, pretending it was a bomb. We immediately started running like crazy and the security guy started running along with us out of fear! We had great fun, we died laughing.”
While Higuain went on to their rivals Juventus, El Kaddouri ended up on the other side of the city, joining Torino on loan.
“I was asked if I’d have made the same decision as Pipita, but I always replied: ‘It’s not as if Juve would want me!’ It’s difficult to judge someone else’s choice. It might be complex for the Neapolitans to understand, as there was such a strong rivalry with Juve, but if Juve want you, then you can consider them. After his season at Napoli, Higuain could’ve aimed for higher than Juve or Arsenal.”
El Kaddouri also confirmed an incident when he vented his anger at missing a goal and later took it out on a photographer’s car.
“Of course! It was against Roma! I’m so sorry… I ruined a lot of people’s bets with that missed goal. I remember it all, they even sent me photographs of the destroyed car.”