Napoli director of sport Cristiano Giuntoli reveals Kostas Manolas tried everything, but was forced to miss the Champions League clash with RB Salzburg.
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“They are a young team, hungry, push forward constantly and are very dangerous on their own turf. They almost completed an extraordinary comeback away against Champions League holders Liverpool, losing only 4-3,” the director of sport told Sky Sport Italia.
“Manolas was filled with painkillers and anti-inflammatories, but he just couldn’t do it. The Coach decided it was best against such a strong attacking team that we needed only those in good shape.”
Lorenzo Insigne was left on the bench, with Hirving Lozano and Dries Mertens upfront.
“With Piotr Zielinski, Fabian Ruiz, Allan and Jose Callejon, it is a midfield aimed more at containment so that we can open up spaces for quick forwards like Lozano and Mertens.”
Ibrahimovic said he’d love to join Napoli and President Aurelio De Laurentiis certainly didn’t close the door.
“Let’s focus on the match. There’s a long way to go until January. We are pleased to be considered highly by a champion like Ibrahimovic and I know Ancelotti has a good rapport with him, but we need to focus on tonight and the players we have.”
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