Following a huge 3-1 win against Atalanta away at Bergamo, Maurizio Sarri had an extensive interview with Mediaset Premium where he touched upon many different subjects.
Sarri: “Gonzalo scored on a situation that we tested yesterday morning which is one of the reasons why he came to embrace me after his goal. This was a very difficult game on a very hostile pitch where it was difficult for us to play our style of football, but we came out in an important way. The team played a big game in terms of character.”
“In the last 20 games we have won 17, so I do not see a situation where we should be particularly concerned. In this moment I see the team in good health; there was only a period of 15 to 20 where we may have not shown brilliance. In three and a half months, this team has played 23 to 24 matches. I am opposed to these seven days of rest. There is not one athlete that is inactive for seven days. Between now and January 6th, we should be playing continuously. It only seems fair to me to provide the fans with a show.”
“Today we did well on set pieces. We received a penalty kick and scored a goal. We did a little more with corner kicks in Europa League. I had told the team that my feelings on set pieces were changing. We changed everything and there is also a discussion of changing the mentality towards these set pieces. Napoli has never needed to study or work on these situations in order to be a dangerous team. It is a culture of work that they had not worked on.”
When asked about changing his penalty kick taker:
“After seventeen victories, I don’t see the need to respond. On this pitch it was very difficult to play football. Against Roma, Higuain had a game where he made the center backs assert their physicality and wasn’t able to move. Today he benefited from his movements. Gonzalo had 4-5 clear scoring chances; with these movements he becomes difficult for the opposing defense. Mertens, after playing a match during the week, played 25 minutes of high level football.”
Sarri also tossed in a joke when asked about his objectives. He said, “The president is very busy at this time with his movie, but he will let me know.”