Spalletti: ‘Napoli must not lose focus’

Luciano Spalletti tried his hardest to dampen the Napoli enthusiasm after an extraordinary 6-1 Champions League win away to Ajax. ‘If we lose our focus, then we’re in trouble.’

The Partenopei already had a 100 per cent record in the Champions League this season and had a scare when going behind in Amsterdam, but reacted with a spectacular 6-1 away victory.

Nobody had ever even scored five goals away to Ajax in European competition, let alone six.

“It was a good game, what counts is the performance,” Spalletti told Sky Sport Italia without a smile.

“If we look at Serie A, if we hadn’t won on Sunday, those behind us would’ve caught up, we could find ourselves fifth or sixth in the space of a week. It’s fun to enjoy the ride, but the moment this game ends, we go home and start focusing on the next match. On Sunday we’re facing a Cremonese side in good shape, who are fired up for the occasion, we used up a lot of energy and need to get ourselves ready.”

Liverpool beat Glasgow Rangers 2-0, so they are now in second place on six points, followed by Ajax on three, with Napoli way in front on nine.

“We have had some great Champions League results and performances, that is true, as my team played great football, pressed constantly, tried to score at any moment and felt confident against a very strong side that knows how to play football. They were also pretty tough, as there were 14 fouls against two.

“A result and performance is also only as good as your opponent and Ajax are a club that everyone can learn from, so this is an important result.”

The reporter had to point out that Spalletti seemed anything but enthusiastic in the interview, especially for someone who had just won 6-1 in one of the cathedrals of football.

“I am very happy, honestly, but we need to win the next one, because if we then lose our focus or lose the right way to think about things, then we’re in trouble,” he shrugged.

Giovanni Simeone came off the bench to score and Tanguy Ndombele had probably his best performance so far in the Napoli shirt, hitting the crossbar as a substitute after providing an assist.

“If they train in the right way, there is room for everyone. There are so many games, so close together, we need to rotate. Everything is a consequence of how they train and then play when called upon.”

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