Saturday December 29 2012
Mazzarri: 'A great 2012 for Napoli'

Walter Mazzarri looked back over Napoli’s 2012, which saw them win the Coppa Italia, challenge for the Scudetto and beat Chelsea.

“It has been an important year thanks to the work of everyone, from the club to staff and the players,” the Coach told the official Napoli website.

“Sometimes in football you can achieve extraordinary things. It is easy to finish high up the table one year, but the toughest thing is confirming your status the next.

“Napoli have managed this consistent growth and added results that have brought us to settle at certain levels. This represents a crucial step for a club.”

The Partenopei lifted the Coppa Italia in May, were beaten by Juventus to the Italian Super Cup and had an exhilarating Champions League experience.

They beat Chelsea 3-1 at the San Paolo, but the second leg went to extra time and the Stamford Bridge side eventually won 5-4 on aggregate.

“It was a great game against Chelsea. We beat the side that went on to be Champions of Europe and were the only team in the entire tournament to put three goals past them in that tournament.

“Aside from the result, what counts is that we showed all of Europe that Napoli are a mature team on an international level. I think that was the game that helped make our mark and ensure we were appreciated in Europe.

“It’s a shame about the second leg, but I am convinced that over the two fixtures we did enough to deserve qualification.”

Napoli did lift some silverware for the first time in two decades, as they defeated Juventus in the Coppa Italia Final.

“It made the result even more prestigious, as we managed to beat a side that never failed on the big occasion,” continued Mazzarri.

“That was a prize for the quality of our players and the hard work put in. We gave our fans joy and the club an historic moment.

“The Super Cup was an experience that enriched our maturation process. In terms of football, it was a fine performance and certainly deserved a better result,” he said of the defeat to Juventus in extra time after two red cards. “Unfortunately the incidents led to an undeserved loss.

“It has not been an easy time lately, but we emerged with a win at Siena and a show of character. That enabled us to end 2012 on a high, a year of great prestige and absolute worth.”