Mertens: ‘Now Napoli must always play like this’

Dries Mertens wants Napoli to ‘always play like this’ after tearing Lazio apart 4-0 and reiterates he wants to remain at the club.

The Partenopei ran riot on the night a life-size statue of Diego Armando Maradona was unveiled in the stadium, a year on from the icon’s death.

Serie A | Napoli 4-0 Lazio: Mertens magic on Maradona’s night

Piotr Zielinski opened the scoring with a rocket, followed by two marvellous Mertens strikes, including one in a quick passing move reminiscent of Maurizio Sarri’s Napoli side, and a Fabian Ruiz rocket.

They were clearly enjoying their football and it continued even after the final whistle, Lorenzo Insigne drenching Mertens with water during his interview with DAZN.

“We played our best game of the season, now the important thing is to always play like this. We have to repeat the performance. There are difficult games coming up, but this was perfect,” Mertens told DAZN.

“I don’t know which goal I preferred. When you are injured and have to work hard to get back in shape, watching the team play well and then Victor (Osimhen) got injured, it was important to be ready and give my contribution.

“I am not irritated by criticism. It’s up to me to prove myself every day and it is always a pleasure like today.”

After the goal, Mertens pointed to the ground as if to say ‘I am staying here.’ His contract is due to expire at the end of the season with an option to extend, but there’s no guarantee Napoli will activate it.

“I always said, I hope to stay. I cannot say more than that.”

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