The historic coach is the big bet of the blue and white club. However, a deeper template is required to defeat the 'Vecchhia Signora'
Napoli has just hired the Italian Carlo Ancelotti as their new technical director, achieving an impressive quality jump for the club. However, the experience and effective technical direction offered by the respected strategist will not be enough to overcome Juventus, a club that has spread its dominance throughout Italian football for more than 7 years. What does Napoli need to face La Vecchia Signora?
Napoli is one of the best teams in Italy, but that does not mean it is one of the clubs with the most extensive squads or with more replacements. The blue club of southern Italy counted in the last season with a staff of 25 players in total, of which 2 were transferred to other clubs mid-season, 2 players did not play a single game and 5 players played less than 12 games.
In the Napoli only 16 players of the total staff played regularly, this is a very low figure if you consider that Juventus, Serie A and Italy Cup champions, had up to 22 players who had stability and played continually.
This only means that Juventus has a greater number of competitive players, which serves to: perform an internal competition in search of improving the level, to have spare parts when a match needs it, to dose efforts and to include with its staff the 3 competitions that are usually contested in a season. Napoli must expand its workforce in each of the aforementioned points.
The short staff of Napoli made the club succumb in its goal of getting the Scudetto during the final stretch of last season. The Azzurri made a tremendous start to the season with 22 wins, 3 ties, and 1 defeat in the first 26 league games. However, in the last 12 dates, having its entire team saturated with matches and with great accumulated fatigue, it achieved just 6 wins, got 4 draws, and was defeated twice, thus pulling his title chances in the trash.
For this reason, the Napoli must sign several competitive players if it wants to maintain the level for a full season. Ancelotti will be one of the happiest people in the club if Napoli managers meet the requirement to extend the staff. An archer (Pepe Reina by age and performance is no longer a guarantee of ownership) a pair of defenders (Raúl Albiol stopped being a top back) and a prestigious 9, look like the main positions to strengthen.
Goals: a Latin American legacy
The position that the club should strongly reinforce with a world-class player will be that of a forward. The club had more than 10 years with the position of forward protected thanks to Latin America, because it counted on great standards that responded with height to so great responsibility.
The Latin American legacy began in 2007 when the club came to Argentina Ezequiel Lavezzi, who consolidated the attack of the team despite not being a center forward by nature. Lavezzi played a total of 188 games for Napoli, scoring 48 goals and making 61 assists. 'El Pocho' left the club in 2012, but not before handing over the baton to another Latin American: Edinson Cavani
The Uruguayan Cavani arrived in Napoli in 2010 and formed an extraordinary pair with Lavezzi until the latter left the club. The charrúa played 138 games, scored 107 goals, and made 18 assists, becoming the club's fourth-highest goalscorer and idol of the fans. Cavani left the club in 2013, but immediately another Latin American picked up the responsibility.
Gonzalo Higuain, Argentine forward, arrived at Napoli in 2013 and deployed his full potential as a striker. He played 147 games, scored 92 goals and 26 assists, becoming the club's eighth all-time leading scorer. The player left the club in 2016 causing great controversy, as he went to play Juventus, eternal rival of the Azzurri.
The player signed in 2016 to replace Higuaín was the Polish Arkadiusz Milik, who still remains in the club. However, Milik has not been able to even approach the level of Latin Americans. In two seasons, the Pole has only been able to play 40 games due to a serious injury, in which he has scored scarcely 14 goals and has made only 2 assists.
While it is true that the club has a formidable lead formed by the Belgian Dries Mertens, the Italian Lorenzo Insigne and the Spanish José Callejón, none has been able to match the Latin American legacy that remains in the club for more than a decade. For that reason, the name of Edinson Cavani returns to the orbit of the club 'partenopeo' with who already played between 2010 and 2013.
The decision to give technical direction to Carlo Ancelotti is just the first task resolved by the Napoli managers, because even to be able to aspire to face Juventus must form an extensive, competitive and understanding team of the winning game system that the Italian want to implement.
LatinAmerican Post | Javier Aldana
Translated from “Ancelotti no es suficiente: Napoli necesita algo más para poder desbancar a la Juventus”