Insigne: ‘Always special for Napoli to beat Juventus, 5-1 is crazy’

Lorenzo Insigne was impressed with Napoli’s Scudetto charge this season and highlighted that his new club Toronto FC ‘has very important plans’ for him.

The 31-year-old Italian forward ended a career-long association with the Partenopei last summer, leaving on a free transfer to sign a four-year contract with the MLS outfit. Insigne did well in his first six months in Canada, scoring six goals and providing two assists across 12 appearances, working well with compatriot Federico Bernardeschi.

Speaking to La Gazzetta dello Sport, Insigne first discussed Napoli’s thrilling win over Juventus and their recent outings.

“The 5-1 over Juventus is a crazy result, I cheered so much. For us Neapolitans it always has a special flavour to beat the Bianconeri, let alone like this.

“The elimination from the Coppa Italia was just an incident, we mustn’t be dramatic. Spalletti then knows perfectly which chords to touch with the players.

“I must congratulate the coach and all the staff, because the physical condition is impressive, the Azzurri are going for double figures. With Sarri we were exciting, but we lacked a little something.”

He spoke highly about Nigerian striker Victor Osimhen, who has been a key figure for Luciano Spalletti’s side this season, scoring 13 goals in 15 Serie A games.

“He’s improving day by day and his potential is coming through. Spalletti is bringing out his unique characteristics such as athleticism in aerial play and progression, coordination. I’m really happy for Victor, he’s a very good person.”

The 31-year-old highlighted the incredible growth of Stanislav Lobotka.

“If I had to find a surprise, I would say Lobotka, absolutely. He’s doing crazy things. I have to be honest, when I was there, he was not the player he is now. That’s another reason to be grateful to the coach.”

He refused to touch on Napoli’s chances of winning the Scudetto this year.

“I won’t be the one to give an opinion, we’ve been through too much and I prefer to take refuge in superstition. But I’m the first fan, I follow them from afar and after every game I send congratulations to everyone.”

Finally, Insigne discussed his happiness with Toronto FC and how things are going for him in Canada.

“Great, better than I expected. Football is different, there’s no obsessive search for victory, we always leave with applause, no matter what, and the fans make us feel appreciated. I am much calmer.

“I had offers in Europe, but I preferred to move to Canada, although I don’t consider it a drastic choice. I am continuing to do the job I love as I did when I was a child.

“In the MLS I am the most emblematic player, and this fills me with pride, both the club and the league have very important plans for me. When I think back to where I started, I feel really satisfied.”