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With Leonardo Pavoletti’s transfer to Napoli, recently made official, the now ex-Genoa striker has dedicated a long letter to the Grifone‘s fans, via his Facebook profile.

Here is the letter, translated to English:


a simple word, like me.

I say goodbye to Genoa and Genova after two intense, happy, enthusiastic years filled with emotions and hard work. I remember the beginning. January 2015. I was home, in Livorno. Out of nowhere, a phone call: “Tomorrow come to Milano, you’re signing for Genoa”. The excitement kept me awake for the whole night: an important team whose colours have always coloured the history of football. I knew it would be the right place. A new home, where to grow and become a big player. I arrived on my tiptoes, ready to abide by the needs of the mister and the team. At the beginning, on the bench, I went through a hard time, but I was determined to gain faith, love and a place on the starting eleven. Then the goal against Parma: the joy, my first celebration in rossoblù, the consciousness that hard work pays off. Always.

After that moment, my memories are a puzzle of faces, smiles, autographs, training sessions, friends, losses, wins, sadness, enthusiasm, words and goals. And then two months before the end of last season, the best moment: the victory in the derby and against Inter at home. Relegation fought and safety gained by the squad’s mental strength, and with a good style of play and many goals: a well-deserved happy ending.

This story has now reached its final stages. But my love for this city and this team has not. Love doesn’t end, it simply changes form. Today I’m starting a new adventure, but I’m not forgetting those whom I’ve loved and have loved me, because they are a part of me. Changing jobs is a part of life, whether it be in a business, or seeking new experiences, and it is no different for me. Mistakes and too much talking are also a part of life: if things that I’ve said have offended anyone, I apologise. I understand some people’s resentment, and I’m also familiar with the cynicism and straightforwardness typical of sea-people [Genova lies in Liguria, on the coast]. But this is not a betrayal. It is just a change, which doesn’t justify the insults and threats, which some people have directed towards me. This is everybody’s path: taking separate roads, being welcomed by new fans, as warm as the Genoani, and historically our friends. [Napoli and Genoa fans are associated].

If I’ve only spoken out now, it is because I wanted to avoid incomprehensions and confusion: I opted for writing this today, after a period of reflection, avoiding controversy. Finally, I want to thank everybody. Thanks to the President, the club, all the coaches, my teammates, the fans, the staff, the gardeners, the stewards of the training ground and of the stadium. I’m thankful for every word, criticism, compliment, pat on the back and smile that you have blessed me with.

I was born at sea, in Livorno. I was re-born at sea, in Genova. Now I’m off to yet another sea. For another adventure. 


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