Saturday September 10 2011
Mazzarri: 'Crucial to start with a win'

Walter Mazzarri notes it was “crucial to start with a win” in Serie A and reveals his long-term plan for Manchester City and Milan.

“We played well and it was crucial to start with a win,” the Napoli Coach said of their 3-1 result at Cesena.

“It was by no means easy to emerge with three points against a side like Cesena. We've got to be more concentrated on set plays and avoid our opponents' blocking in the box, as we really ran too many risks this evening.”

Marek Hamsik and Goran Pandev were on the bench, but came on after Cesena went down to 10 men in the final half-hour.

“I rested Hamsik with an eye towards the Champions League and next week's match with Milan. I also had to take the strain of international duty into account. We have a large, competitive squad, so it's only right to take advantage of that.

“We are ready for Manchester and I am curious to see how Napoli will react to the spotlight on such a big stage.”

The Partenopei are in the ‘Group of Death' with Bayern Munich and Villarreal.

“It was an unlucky draw, but it will help us to mature, seeing as Napoli hadn't played in the Champions League for 21 years.”

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