Former midfielder Marek Hamsik confirmed that he could’ve joined Napoli with coach Francesco Calzona and highlighted that he would be present for the Champions League clash with Barcelona.

Partenopei president Aurelio De Laurentiis decided to make a change on Monday, just days after the 1-1 draw with Genoa. He sacked head coach Walter Mazzarri and brought in Slovakia boss Calzona on a short-term deal, taking over until the end of the season.

Prior to the announcement, multiple reports suggested that Hamsik would join Calzona’s staff at Napoli, finally returning to the club five years after his departure in February 2019. This ultimately didn’t occur, with the former midfielder moving forward with his current various footballing roles.

Speaking to RTVS via TMW, Hamsik first discussed Calzona’s appointment at Napoli and noted that he would be present for the clash with Barcelona.

“For Calzona, being at Napoli is like a dream come true. Everything has been done to satisfy all parties. But it’s something that the FA took care of and had to give its ok.

“Tomorrow I will be at Napoli for the match against Barcelona, but it was a trip that had already been planned for some time. When the draw took place, I decided not to miss a match, it wasn’t a choice linked to the coach.”

He then explained why he decided not to join Calzona’s staff at the Partenopei.

“Calzona contacted me when there was the possibility. He wants me with him. Tomorrow I will definitely see De Laurentiis in Naples, but I have already explained to both of them that I feel I have to stay in Slovakia and not in Naples.

“It’s an attractive offer for me, Napoli are my second home and one day I would like to return there. But this is not the right time.”

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