Monday December 2 2013
Benitez: 'Higuain makes the difference'

Rafa Benitez praised Gonzalo Higuain and Goran Pandev for their tactical versatility after Napoli’s 4-2 victory away to Lazio.

“We’re still at 75 per cent,” the Coach told Sky Sport Italia.

“We have to remember this was a difficult game in which we had to show intensity, character and determination. It’s also important to note the pitch was awful and the ball didn’t bounce regularly.”

Pipita Higuain hadn’t scored from open play in Serie A since September 22, but bagged a brace this evening and set up Pandev.

“Clearly Higuain is a player who can make the difference for us. I spoke to him before the game, but I spoke to many of the players.

“The most important thing is not just that he scored, but that he put in a good performance, scared defenders and create space for teammates. It was difficult for us to play our style of football on this turf.

“Pandev and Higuain are two intelligent players who can make those movements in attack. They can hold up the ball or attack the space, so it becomes difficult for opposition defenders to know what to do.

“We needed to recover the tactical level we had in other encounters and this game required hard work, which is what the players did and I am satisfied.”

Napoli ended their run of three consecutive defeats in all competition and climbed into third place, just four points shy of Roma.

“We take each game at a time for the three points. Every match is just as important as the next.”