Thursday October 22 2020
Hysaj: 'Relishing this moment'

Elseid Hysaj warns the opening game with AZ Alkmaar ‘is the most important’ for Napoli’s Europa League campaign. ‘I always said this is my home.’

It kicks off at 17.55 UK time (16.55 GMT), click here for the line-ups and LIVEBLOG.

“It’s always important to start strong, as the first game is the biggest so you can get points on the board and be more reassured going forward,” he told Sky Sport Italia.

AZ Alkmaar almost didn’t make the trip after an outbreak of COVID-19, eventually leaving nine players behind.

“It’s not a pleasant situation, but we know now that in football we have to keep going. I think you cannot worry about external factors when playing football, so I am going to focus only on that.”

Napoli open the Europa League group phase at the Stadio San Paolo and are one of the contenders for the final.

“The team and I are very happy to be in the Europa League. We can achieve anything or nothing in life, but we have to keep believing and give our best.”

Albania international Hysaj was repeatedly linked with an exit over the summer, yet continues to play.

“I have always said this is my home, I get on with the coach and will always try to give 110 per cent for this club. I am relishing this moment in my career.”