Monday November 4 2019
ADL: 'Ritiro not a punishment'

Napoli President Aurelio De Laurentiis insists he is not punishing the squad by sending them into ritiro, arguing he wants to get rid of “a lump in their throat”.

After the 2-1 loss to Roma at the Olimpico, Napoli have been sent to a punitive training camp for the whole week and Carlo Ancelotti will have the full attention of his players until they leave for the international break next week.

“The squad will be in ritiro until Sunday morning, when some of the players will leave to go with their national teams,” De Laurentiis told Radio Kiss Kiss.

“The ritiro is not a punishment, but an opportunity for the players to get to know each other better.”

The Partenopei are without a win in Serie A since they beat Verona 2-0 on October 19 and have since taken part in a controversial 2-2 draw with Atalanta.

The refereeing decisions were loudly discussed after the game and the patron remains adamant changes to the system are needed.

“At Roma we felt beaten as [Carlo] Ancelotti couldn’t be on the bench because of stupidity and a lack of flexibility in the regulation.

“I’m not worried about our 18 points in the League, I see a big lump in their throat that remains there.

“I think we have started slow because some of our key members came late to the preparations [in the off-season].

“I’m thinking of [Kalidou] Koulibaly, [Hirving] Lozano. Then there’s [Arkadiusz] Milik’s injury, which straight away gave us other problems.

“When I look at Roma and we concede two penalties, it astounds me. Evidently, there is a lack of concentration.

“Refereeing is a serious and complex problem that doesn’t want addressing. We should start with a clean slate, send everyone home.

“Everyone should be foreign and well-paid. If they make a mistake, they should be fined. At the third mistake, you go home.”

During their week in ritiro, Napoli face Red Bull Salzburg in the Champions League and Genoa in Serie A.

Both games will take place at the San Paolo and the southeners can qualify for the knockout stages of the Champions League with a win in Austria.

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