Monday March 17 2014
Benitez: 'I don't discuss referees'

Rafa Benitez refused to discuss the controversial incident that decided Napoli’s victory at Torino.

Gonzalo Higuain scored the winner in the final minute when he went clear after tripping Kamil Glik, though the striker maintains it was an accidental collision and not a foul.

“I haven’t spoken about referees throughout the season, so I am not going to start now,” the Coach told Sky Sport Italia.

“I think we created scoring opportunities, just like Torino did, and proved that this team wants to win right to the end.

“Torino clammed up very well to then go on the counter-attack. We played against Porto on Thursday, we’ve been playing two games per week all season, so it’s not easy to stay sharp.”

This result takes Napoli temporarily into joint second place on a par with Roma, who play Udinese tonight and still have a game against Parma in hand.

“We know that second place depends on them, but we must do our best and try to win every time.”

Benitez again picked Marek Hamsik, whose poor form is starting to cause concern for the club and the player.

“He did much better today, as he helped out the team in attack and defence. I never thought of bringing him into a deeper role, as he is so good at the final ball and those runs forward. I said that I had faith in him and he replied with a good performance.

“I think he needs to have freedom to do what he wants to on the field.”

Napoli’s next test is on Thursday in the Europa League, where they must overturn a 1-0 first leg defeat to Porto.

“We reach this game with confidence, because we won a difficult test today. We need to get everyone fit again and hope we are fresh for a match that will be like a Final.”

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