Feb 3, 2013
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Aurelio De Laurentiis:
You are sure they will come then?
Antonio De Lauro: I am a man of my word. Announce me as manager and they will come.

Out of the blue, Aurelio De Laurentiis, Chairman of S.S.C. Napoli, has announced that Walter Mazzarri will not be the man managing the team in the 2012/13 season all his backroom staff will leave with him as the new manager is said to have wanted a "fresh start". De Laurentiis have instead hired unknown Antonio Di Lauro, claiming complete faith in him and his ability to get the team forward to challenge for the titles both in Italy and in Europe.

"We wish Mazzarri all the best in his future endevours and thank him for what he has accomplished here in Napoli, but we feel that this is as far as we would get with him and therefore decided on trying something else. Antonio Di Lauro, despite being quite unknown, has good connections and we trust in him to bring the club in to a future of winning."

Walter Mazzarri will have to look for a new job after being laid of by Napoli in the pre-season.

Antonio Di Lauro makes his first public appearance today as S.S.C. Napoli has called a press conference to introduce their new management.

Signore Di Lauro takes the seat in the centre, with Di Laurentiis sitting to the left of him and with two empty seats on the right.

Antonio Di Lauro, you are here today as the new manager of Napoli, a club fighting for European spots in Serie A, and you take this job after Walter Mazzarri who have done very well for the team taking them this far.
Do you think you have the skills to improve on what he built here, seeing as you have no known experience within the field?

Di Lauro: Hello. Uhm, yes I do believe that I am the man for this job, to take the next step with Napoli. It is true that I do not have much experience in leading a football team, but I have the passion and love for the club that is needed, I've grown up with it in this city, I also have experience in... leading people, and motivate them to do as I say. I believe football players to be not much more in their core, than normal men.

One of the first thing you did at the club was firing almost all of the backroom staff, who do you have in mind taking their place, it's important to have a good backroom for the club to improve, no?

Di Lauro: Aurelio will answer this question.

Di Laurentiis: Signore Di Lauro here does have very good connections, as I've said before, and have pulled some strings to get two assistants to the clubs, two I believe you will like.

Aurelio Di Laurentiis signals to a security guard to get the new staff members and after a short while they arrive.
Camera flashes lights up the room in the instant they walk into the room.

The rest of the press conference got out of hand, and the new staff together with Di Laurentiis left without any real questions being answered.

Napoli present new leading trio

Today napoli presented their new manager, Antonio Di Lauro, in what was thought to be the big thing of today.
It was not.
At the same press conference, without anyones knowing, he also presented his two closest men who are going to lead the club forward with him.
These two were no other than Napoli legends Diego Maradona and Gianfranco Zola.
The city of Napoli has been in celebration since, seeing their idol and God return to the city to bring them further success.

Antonio Di Lauro - Gianfranco Zola - Diego Maradona
Brilliant start mate you've defiantly got a reader here. Love the layout and what a trio.

Be sure to check out my Chelsea career.
Thank you!
Hopefully we can work wonders, Maradona, Zola and I.
I did, and left a comment, will follow you as well.

Napoli manager keeps cleaning house as he sells five players in the last few days.

Gianluca Grava - Chievo €200K
I believe this is a good deal for Napoli, Grava isn't really a Serie A class defender, especially not for a team going for the top spots. He is 35 years old and they should be glad to get anything out from selling him.

Salvatore Aronica
- Torino €500K
A bit of a favorite of Mazzarri's that doesn't seem to fit in to De Lauro's plans. Not terrible but once again an old player who isn't really good enough for a title candidate.

Federico Fernández
- ACF Fiorentina €3M
Came to Napoli for the last season and played some, didn't really impress. Napoli will be content to get the money they spent back.

Francesco Bruno - AlbinoLeffe €140K
A Napoli product that has been on loan the last few seasons in the lower leagues without really impressing there.
Not a man for Serie A, not yet anyhow.

Camilo Zúñiga - Arsenal €15M
Has been a part of the Napoli squad for three seasons and have played well. This bid from Arsenal however was too good to pass up, this will give Napoli some more room to improve other parts of the squad although they will need to get someone else to play out on the left as Dossena isn't really up for it anymore.

Camilo Zúñiga make a big move to Premier League side Arsenal

Big moves as Napoli sign Italy's future.
Stephan El Shaarawy has said goodbye to his friends in Milano as he signs a 4-year contract with Napoli for a fee said to be between €15M and €20M.

Stephan El Shaarawy: "I'd like to thank the fans and the club for welcoming me here last year to the spectacular club that is A.C. Milan.
But now it's time for me to move on, it's sudden but both the clubs and I have considered this to be the best for all involved.
Napoli have faith in me and I hope to fulfill their hopes and my capabilities."

In the same announcement, they are also declaring that they've bought the service of 21-year old Alessandro Florenzi, who will join them from A.S. Roma after having just played one full season in Serie B on a loan at Crotone where he scored 11 times.

Diego Maradona:
"I've had a look at him myself before this was all settled, and I can see lots of talent in him. He's got a great touch of the ball for a boy his age, and scores well from his position as an offensive midfielder or as a winger. I am sure he can blossom in an enviroment like this and with playmates such as Lorenzo Insigne and El Shaarawy, Italy can be sure to have a good offensive in years to come.
Some really good transfer so far mate and loving the layout it is sweet!
Yes, hopefully they'll both turn out well. They came at a bit of a price but I know that if I had waited and Shaarawy would have gotten to play at Milan, he probably never would've left for us. Roma usually plays like **** in my saves, now perhaps even more so with the young starlet gone. I hope they do rather well though, Serie A is better with them in it.

Napoli pre-season friendlies

Wolves 0
Goals: -
Bookings: Barry Bannan Yellow Card (16)
Injuries: Matt Doherty (27)

Napoli 2
Goals: Edinson Cavani (59, 90)
Bookings: Paolo Cannavaro (28)
Injuries: -

Il Matador was the difference on this day as Napoli still look out of form against Championship side Wolverhampton.
Neither El Shaarawy nor Florenzi had joined up with the team yet so there was no chance of seeing them in action for the first time today.

Di Lauro: "It's only a friendly so I won't put that much in to it, we won and most players got some time on the field, it's all for the fitness really. Cavani looked well to score twice and there were some smooth movement out there, but many things we will have to work on as well."

Dortmund 6
Goals: Mario Götze (11), Royston Drenthe (21, 24), Jakub Blaszczykowski (23), Robert Lewandowski (33, 36)
Bookings: -
Injuries: -

Napoli 2
Goals: Alessandro Florenzi (47), Edinson Cavani (7
Bookings: Marek Hamsik (20)
Injuries: Hugo Campagnaro (54), Alessandro Florenzi (63)

Statistically an even game but Napoli saw no less than six goals from Dortmund in the first half. It looked like they didn't even know the game had begun, absolutely terrible. They picked themselves up in the second half as well as Dortmund subbing some class out for youngsters. This gave Napoli a chance to get back in the game but Dortmund didn't collapse even with two goals conceded. Campagnaro and Florenzi were both cleared by the medical team after the game and there should be no abscense from training for any of them.

"Our defending in the first half was nothing short of dreadful, if there were any defending at all. The Dortmund players seemed to run past us with ease and you could see that this was only our second game of the season. This is something Napoli have had troubles with in the past years, playing with only three defenders and conceding a good amount of goals and living on their offensive power. We have started to play with four men on the back and it will take some time getting used to, but we believe it will help us get some more consistent performances in due time."

Manchester United 3

Goals: Wayne Rooney (Penalty 24), Nick Powell (32), Nani (67)
Bookings: -
Injuries: -

Napoli 2
Goals: Marek Hamsik (15), Gökhan Inler (39)
Bookings: -
Injuries: Alessandro Gamberini

A game that Manchester United dominated entirely while Napoli went for a more counter attacking focused style of play.
Manchester United were however capable of overpowering Napoli in the end even though some fine moves kept Napoli in the game for pretty long, especially Inlers goal was a true beauty to behold with El Shaarawy laying it down the right hand line for Maggio with his back-heel, a Maggio who ran down to the corner flag and flung the ball backwards to a Hamsik who lurked just outside the penalty box who immedietly put it forward as El Shaarawy now came running towards goal but as he found himself attacked by three United players he opted to lay the ball backwards where Inler loaded up and hit the ball on volley, leaving Lindegaard paralyzed with no chance of a save.

Maradona: "We did alright this pre-season even though we lost twice, but that was against really tough competition, German champions and we all know what United are capable of. Good to see Cavani hasn't lost his touch in front of goal.

Supercoppa Italia

Beijing and the "Bird's Nest" Stadium will host this year's Supercoppa between Juventus and Napoli

Juventus 2
Goals: Leonardo Bonucci (17), Vencenzo Iaquinta (95)
Bookings: Alessandro Matri (28)
Injuries: Leonardo Bonucci (59)

Napoli 1
Goals: Paolo Cannavaro (45)
Bookings: Stephan El Shaarawy (114)
Injuries: Edinson Cavani (15), Valon Behrami (32)

An early injury on Edinson Cavani saw Napoli weakened from the very beginning of the game, he really is their biggest star. Things didn't become better for them as Italy international Leonardo Bonucci forced the ball into goal with a powerful header after a Giaccherini freekick from a bit outside the penalty area. Juventus kept piling on the pressure but the Napoli defence held this time around and in the 45th minute, just before the first half would be over, Napoli got their chance at a set-piece as Pandev's corner reached the head of Napoli captain Paolo Cannavaro whose header hit the crossbar before going in past Storari who never stood a chance.
The second half was filled with chances, Juventus who still possessed most of the ball, and controlled the game at a tempo of their choice, while Napoli took every chance they could to counter attack and score on a break.
Neither team did though as both defenses did their job really well tonight and took the game to extra time. Here a slight lack of focus in by Britos gave Quagliarella too much time and space as he got the ball across to Iaquinta, perfectly at his feet, he made no mistake from 5m out and De Sanctis could do nothing but watch the ball rattle the net. Napoli tried but in the end, the two early substitutions saw to that the Napoli squad was entirely out of fuel as the final whistle went off. A really good game, especiall defensively and a good start to the competative season in Italy.

Juventus got to celebrate their first title of the season as they are top favorites to win even more in Italy

Injury update

Edinson Cavani
Had to leave the pitch in Supercoppa game against Juventus with a twisted knee, will be back within a week and will be fit for fight again as the league season starts. Good news for Napoli as 'Il Matador' truly is their most brightly shining star.

Alessandro Gamberini
Currently undergoing treatment for a twisted ankle, will be back within two weeks and is in no danger of being unfit for the season premier. Will be able to play if called upon.

Blerim Dzemaili
Out with a pulled hamstring. Will be back in about a week and will be fit before the season premier against Fiorentina.

Valon Behrami
Walked off the field by his own in the game against Juventus but couldn't finish it. Is back already with no real injury.

Napoli fans will be glad to hear that Cavani is not seriously injured and will be back very soon

S.S.C. Napoli have signed a deal with young Dutch left fullback Jetro Willems from Eredivise side, PSV Eindhoven.
The price is reported to be around €8M of which most will be payed off monthly by Napoli over a four year period.

Di Lauro: "The boy is only 18 years old and has already played 6 international games for the Netherlands, that kind of speaks for itself as it is one of the best international sides in the world. He has a good season behind him and I think that he will be able to contribute as soon as he settles here in Napoli. He's good both defensive and offensive as a fullback needs to be these days. He works really hard for the team and he's smart for his age as well. Reads the game and makes pretty good decisions on when to go forward and when to stay back."

Dutch international ready for Napoli and Seria A
Look at Leo Baptistao, good signing. I am going to get him. Will be writing a story later. This is ace and love the layout.

Serie A Season Premiere

ACF Fiorentina 1
Goals: Luca Toni (33)
Bookings: Luca Toni (45), Giulio Miglaccio (1st 55, 2nd 74)
Injuries: -
MVP: Cristian Llama (8.2)

S.S.C. Napoli 3

Goals: Cristian Llama (Own Goal 11), Valon Behrami (22), Edinson Cavani (90+1)
Bookings: Paolo Cannavaro (32)
Injuries: -
MVP: Marco Donadel (8.1)

Napoli will start the game with Cavani on the bench since he just recently got back from his twisted knee injury.
Even without their star, Napoli takes command of the game from the start, playing a shorter style of play than we are used to seeing them, trying to keep some possession of the ball, and not just run away with it.
It pays off as in the 11th minute a corner gets to El Shaarawy who tries to place it in the top corner of the goal, just to see Fiorentina midfielder Cristian Llama trying to clear it but putting it in his own net instead. After another eleven minutes, former Fiorentina player Valon Behrami gets the ball just outside the penalty box and powers the ball into the lower right corner of the goal, Viviani stretches as far to the left as he can but can't reach the ball until it's too late. There is something about those eleven minutes in this game, because after another 11 minute period Llama gets back at Napoli with a great cross from Fiorentinas left hand side that hits towering centre forward Luca Toni straight in the head, a powerful header that De Sanctis is unable to parry.
New Napoli player Willems comes off in the 55th minute for Britos, Willems has been decent in this game but is not yet fit for 90 minutes after joining Napoli late in the pre-season. The game goes back and forth alot in the second half with Napoli getting more shots off.
A clumsy tackle in the 74th makes Migliaccio see yellow for the second time in the game and Fiorentina is now down to 10 men. This is when Cavani enters the field letting Pandev take his place on the bench.
In the 84nd minute, Florenzi comes on for Behrami, who is booed off by his former supporters, to make his league debut for Napoli.
Having one player more on the pitch really moves the game in Napoli's favour with Fiorentina struggling to create anything more. And to close the deal, Edinson Cavani scores a powerful goal in the 91st minute of the game.
Three points for a Napoli without really convincing until after Migliaccio was sent off.

Marco Donadel putting in a good effort in Napoli's defensive midfield

Serie A Team of the Week

Valon Behrami makes the Team of the Week for his play in the game against Fiorentina


UEFA Europa League Draw

Tonights draw placed Napoli in a tough group with Ukrainian power house Dynamo Kyiv, Russian big spenders Anji and Bundesliga outfit Hannover 96.

Di Lauro: "This is a very difficult group that we will be lucky if we can win, or even qualify from. Football in eastern Europe is growing everyday with teams having rich owners and the fact that it's far to travel to the away games against them, and it's a climate that many other teams aren't used to. Extreme cold and such that can mess with the us and hinder us from playing the football that we want to."

Zola: "I will travel to Russia to see Anji play and write a report on them, but as we all know they seem to have an unlimited amount of money as seen in their squad. They have former Barcelona Champions League winner Samuel Eto'o and also former Real Madrid midfielder Lassana Diarra, we will have to be watchful. With that said, I still think it's an open group and that anyone can beat the others on a good day, we'll prepare best we can and try to win, as simple as that."


Chievo 1
Goals: Sergio Pellissier (53)
Bookings: Gennaro Sardo (63)
Injuries: -
MVP: Rinaldo Cruzado (8.0)

S.S.C. Napoli 3
Goals: Edinson Cavani (38), Marek Hamsik (45+1), Alessandro Florenzi (74)
Bookings: Alessandro Gamberini (53)
Injuries: -
MVP: Valon Behrami (8.2)

An easy game for Napoli who controlled the pace from start to finish. Valon Behrami did very well again and were Napoli's best player with an assist and good defensive work on the midfield. A stable defense over-all but once again one mistake lead to a conceded goal. Florenzi gets his first league goal for Napoli and looked to fit in well all 90 minutes.

Dynamo Kyiv 1
Goals: Artem Milevskyi (70)
Bookings: Oleg Gusev (19), Artem Milevskyi (51), Ognjen Vukojevic (90)
Injuries: -
MVP: Artem Milevskyi (7.7)

S.S.C. Napoli 2
Goals: Alessandro Florenzi (16, 57)
Bookings: Marek Hamsik (11)
Injuries: -
MVP: Alessandro Florenzi (8.8)

A close game where Napoli's new signing, Alessandro Florenzi, leads the way with two goals and proved to be the difference. The first goal coming from a nice cross from Insigne, an Insigne who also started the second goal with a pass to Cavani who laid it on for Florenzi with a great one-touch pass. Dynamo tried into the last minute to get another goal after Milevskyi's header, but failed.

Bologna 0
Goals: -
Bookings: Saphir Taïder (29), Archimede Morleo (1st 42, 2nd 47), Roger Carvalho (61)
Injuries: -
MVP: Tiberio Guarente (8.5)

S.S.C. Napoli 2
Goals: Lorenzo Insigne (48, 87)
Bookings: Marco Donadel (17), Gökhan Inler (31), Hugo Campagnaro (37), Marek Hamsik (54), Andrea Dossena (70), Blerim Dzemaili (72)
Injuries: -
MVP: Lorenzo Insigne (9.0)

Once again a youngster leads the way for Napoli, this time the city's own son, Lorenzo Insigne with double goals.
Quite a few yellow cards in this game though as the ref didn't really like there to be any tough plays at all, a bit boring and might hurt us in a few games when players will become suspended. Napoli won though, and their fans will be happy with that.

With 2 goals and 2 assists in the last three games Lorenzo proves valuable for the club in his heart
Was wondering when Insigne was going to step up. Great start to the season mate.


S.S.C. Napoli 2
Goals: Edinson Cavani (8, Penalty 58)
Bookings: Jetro Willems (55)
Injuries: Paolo Cannavaro (86)
MVP: Edinson Cavani (8.6)

Palermo 0
Goals: -
Bookings: Egídio Arévalo Ríos (14), Jasmin Kurtic (21), Edgar Barreto (1st 49, 2nd 80), Mauro Cetto (54), Andrea Mantovani (75)
Injuries: -
MVP: Andrea Mantovani (7.9)

Napoli controlled the game comfortably against a Palermo sitting in 2nd to last spot in the league with no wins and only one goal scored so far. Although they have been up against Lazio, A.C. Milan and Juventus before this game, so it doesn't really say much about them other than they do not look like title candidates.

Genoa 0
Goals: -
Bookings: Riccardo Cazzola (14), Emiliano Moretti (45+2), Michele Canini (75), Luca Antonelli (90+2)
Injuries: -
MVP: Juraj Kucka (7.7)

S.S.C. Napoli 3

Goals: Michele Canini (Own Goal 27), Stephan El Shaarawy (66), Alessandro Florenzi (75)
Bookings: -
Injuries: -
MVP: Edinson Cavani (8.3)

A Napoli in form against a Genoa dead last in Serie A, the odds were in Napoli's favour for this one. It might not look like it but Genoa had a good game, it went back and forth with the difference being Napoli were clinical in front of goal while Genoa was wasteful, really wasteful. This was three points that got Napoli past Juventus and up on 1st place.

S.S.C. Napoli 3
Goals: Alessandro Florenzi (22, 87), Marek Hamsik (70)
Bookings: Alessandro Gamberini (59)
Injuries: -
MVP: Alessandro Florenzi (9.3)

Hannover 1
Goals: Jan Schlaudraff (41)
Bookings: Mame Diouf (26), Karim Haggui (90+3)
Injuries: -
MVP: Jan Schlaudraff (7.5)

Napoli's good form just keeps them going, this time against German opposition. Another three points that puts them on top of their Europa League group. Young Alessandro Florenzi keeps impressing in Europe with a good amounts of goals from his offensive midfield position, although he is sometimes played on the left wing.
Edinson Cavani didn't have one of his best games tonight and was barely seen at all. Hannover's goal came from a De Sanctis fumble.

Alessandro Florenzi leads Napoli towards new European victory with 2 goals.


Violence have occured before the game between Napoli and Lazio at San Paolo later this evening.
Lazio supporters are reported to have burned straw dolls made to look like Napoli legend Diego Maradona,
outside of his home.
Witnesses say that there were about 300 Lazio supporters or more,
and that they were acting threatening towards the civilians and police at the scene.
It did not take long for the Napolitans to defend the home of their idol and fighting began.

Twentysix men are at the hospital in Napoli, being treated for serious injuries and burns.
Another two were found dead on the inside of Maradonas wall,
as they had climbed over and been shot by unidentified men shortly after Napoli manager Di Lauro arrived in his car.
In the chaos no one witnessed the shootings and the police are keeping many of the Ultras in for questioning.
About 200 of the Lazio supporters were escorted by police out of the city by train to return to Rome.

Di Lauro: "Are you alright Diego?"

Maradona: "Me? Of course I am haha, everywhere I go there is chaos, I like it"

Di Lauro: "I will station two of my men here at all times, just in case, someone almost got in but I got them taken care of, and it might scare people from trying again. Just as you're the city's idol, you're min as well you know?"

Maradona: "Well if you think that's needed, I won't question you my friend. Haha, come here, relax, have a cigarr! I just got them from Cuba, well you'd know, you got them for me."

Di Lauro: "Sorry I don't have time. I have some business to attend to before the game tonight, I might run a bit late, can you get the players prepared in time if I'm absent?

Maradona: "No problem, no problem. Me and Gianfranco will get everything ready."

Maradona watching the riot outside his home in Napoli