Saturday February 19 2011
Mazzarri slams 'Lavezzi injustice'

Walter Mazzarri has blasted the three-match ban for Ezequiel Lavezzi. “I feel an incredible sense of injustice” for Napoli.

The player and Roma's Aleandro Rosi were suspended after video evidence of them spitting at each other in an off-the-ball incident.

Napoli's appeal was rejected on Friday evening, but used new footage that the defence counsel had not seen.

“I am disappointed and indignant,” slammed Coach Mazzarri. “I feel an incredible sense of injustice. I agree with the club statement, as clearly the rules of procedure were not followed.

“If there was proof of them spitting at each other, there should be a different punishment for the one who reacted and the one who provoked it. Instead, the commission did not recognise any extenuating circumstances.

“Pocho was showing no interest in his opponent before then. It is absurd and this sentence sets a dangerous precedent.”

Napoli feel particularly aggrieved at losing Lavezzi for three rounds while they are in second place, only three points shy of Serie A leaders Milan.

“Obviously, he is the most important player we have and we're losing an important figure,” continued Mazzarri.

“We will never give in, though, and will give our all against Catania, Milan and Brescia. I hope our anger can be turned into positive energy. We're taking it one game at a time and I don't want to drop points anywhere.”

It is likely Giuseppe Mascara will replace Lavezzi, starting against his former Elefantini teammates. There are concerns over Edinson Cavani, who will be suspended against Milan if he picks up a yellow card on Sunday.

“I told him not to take off his jersey or protest too much to the referee. As for the rest, I cannot put too much pressure on him, as that would be counter-productive.”