Sunday February 12 2017
Morata: 'Beating Napoli would be sweet'

Alvaro Morata admits beating Napoli in the Champions League would be sweeter given his Juventus past.

The Real Madrid forward played for the Old Lady for two seasons, winning the League and Cup double in both of them, before returning to his boyhood club last summer.

However, the 24-year-old has fond memories of his time in Serie A and is adamant he would have wanted to stay a lot longer had Los Blancos not exercised their right to re-sign him.

"I am not Italian, but I gave everything for the Bianconero shirt and I was willing to stay there many years," Morata said during an interview with Corriere Dello Sport.

"Juventus knew that, the only problem was that Madrid had been my dream since when I was little. Without the buy back option, you would have had to drive me to get me away from Turin!"

Morata added that he has a lot to thank the Italian core of Juventus players for in helping him succeed with the Bianconeri.

"I miss the Italian group from the dressing room - Bonucci, Barzagli, Chiellini, Marchisio, Buffon, they were key in my adaptation to Juventus and Turin.

"If I had come into a bad dressing room at Juventus, I wouldn't have done so well."

Talk then turned to next week's Champions League Round of 16 first leg with Napoli, with the Spaniard acknowledging the Partenopei are dangerous opponents but expressing his desire to get one over on Maurizio Sarri's team.

"We can't wait to play Napoli. They play the ball with their feet very well and their front three of Callejon, Hamsik and Insigne are very dangerous.

"Then, there is Pavoletti and Milik who will also try to be there. They are a great team, this year they don't seem to be challenging for the League so they could be even better in Europe.

"They can beat us, but we can also beat them. That's the magic of the Champions League. 

"I always want to win, but I admit I would be even happier to beat Napoli because of my Juventino past."

Finally, Morata admitted to mixed feelings over the possibility of a final between Juve and Madrid.

"Would I sign for a Real Madrid-Juventus final? Juve are Juve and they always aspire to the maximum. I admit I wouldn't like it, but just to be there I would sign for it.

"If I had to lose a final, I would prefer to lose against Juventus over losing to other teams. But now we need to focus on Napoli. If we think about a hypothetical final, Napoli will send us home."

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