Piotr Zielinski had more than one reason to celebrate his goal in the 1-1 draw with Real Sociedad, as Napoli won their Europa League group.
The Poland international’s strike not only helped secure their place in the Round of 32, but was also the first goal scored since the Stadio San Paolo was renamed the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona.
“Scoring is always a pleasure, especially if it’s an historic first goal at the Stadio Maradona,” Zielinski told Sky Sport Italia.
“I am happy, but the result was more important than who scored tonight. We achieved qualification and that is why we are all happy.
“Our primary objective in the Europa League was getting past the group stage. Real Sociedad have quality players and we suffered a bit too much under their pressure in the second half, but at the end of the day, the two strongest teams in the group are going through.”
A draw proved to be enough for both to progress, as AZ Alkmaar – who were down to 10 men after a controversial red card – lost 2-1 to Rijeka.
“I don’t think the coach was angry at the equaliser, because we were winning the group anyway. I hope to get more goals this season, as the boss keeps telling me I need to shoot more often.”
Zielinski also revealed the reason for his special celebration.
“My wife is pregnant and I am very happy to dedicate this celebration to her. Next year, there will be another Zielinski in the family.”