NEWS
Sunday September 29 2019
Ancelotti: 'Di Lorenzo a surprise'

Carlo Ancelotti acknowledged Napoli didn’t kill off Brescia and left themselves open to pressure, but praised Giovanni Di Lorenzo as “a great surprise for me.”

Dries Mertens and Kostas Manolas had given them a 2-0 half-time lead after a dominant performance, but Mario Balotelli’s header set up a very tense finale.

“Suffering is natural in these games, because if you don’t kill it off with 3-0 and then concede a goal, it all opens up again,” the Coach told DAZN.

“We played an excellent first half, the second was less impressive, but the temperature was very warm and it made the teams get more stretched out.

“We put five in midfield during the last 10 minutes to block off the wings.”

After Nikola Maksimovic went off injured, Giovanni Di Lorenzo ended up becoming a makeshift centre-back.

“We usually have three at the back in possession, pushing Ghoulam up the left and Callejon on the right. Off the ball, Di Lorenzo becomes a right-back with a line of four.

“I must say Di Lorenzo is a great surprise for me. He is extremely reliable wherever you put him and he is a player you don’t need to explain too much to, he just gets it.

“Llorente is a new type of player for us, because while Milik is also tall and strong, he has different characteristics. I opted for Llorente today to give us a presence in the box and he did very well in the first half.

“The team was very tired towards the end, so I introduced a midfielder to help us keep hold of the ball.”

The top two go head-to-head next week, so would Ancelotti hope for an Inter-Juventus draw?

“I am more worried by Torino-Napoli that weekend…”

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