Sunday August 4 2013
Benitez: 'Not a step back'

Rafa Benitez insists the defeat to Porto was “not a step back” for Napoli, as fitness levels are crucial right now.

The Partenopei fumbled a 2-0 lead to draw 2-2 with Arsenal yesterday and were beaten 3-1 by Porto in the Emirates Cup, having again gone in front.

“It is not a step back,” the Coach told the official Napoli website.

“In the first half the team played well, while in the second we should’ve kept possession much better.

“Next week we will continue working. We’re still 20 days away from the start of the season and some players haven’t been here for long.

“When we are fresh, then we play well. When fatigue sets in and we are faced with such a strong opponent, we do suffer.”

Federico Fernandez scored an own goal and Andrea Dossena’s howler gave away the third goal, while Gonzalo Higuain still looked a long way from fitness.

“There’s no point analysing the team over two games played at this stage of pre-season preparations, not even on an individual level.”

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