Former Udinese striker revealed that his brother has been pressuring him to organise a party to celebrate Napoli’s Scudetto. The former Udinese player was born in Naples and is a self-confessed Napoli fan, having previously worked under coach Luciano Spalletti during their time together in Udinese. Speaking with La Gazzetta dello Sport, Di Natale explained why he believes everything has come together for the Partenopei this season and why he thinks they can go all the way in the Champions League as well:
“Spalletti is a person to whom I am very close and whom I often visit in the Tuscan countryside in the summer, we are quite close.”
Maybe soon you will visit him in Naples…..
“Let’s not start: I won’t say that word. My brother is already pressing me to organise the party, but I prefer to stay focused like Spalletti and the team. Then, if it will be, I’ll be happy to return to my city.”
You don’t believe in the Scudetto?
“I do believe in it, but we have to go all the way. Spalletti has deserved to win it for years, because he also played excellent football with Roma. I’ve met few coaches as passionate and competent as him. He would stay on the pitch 12-13 hours a day to study every detail.”
Did you improve with Luciano?
“Of course. At Udine we played beautiful football. Me on the left, Di Michele on the right and Iaquinta in the centre forward role. Playing deep, cutting between defenders, team synchronisms that made you enjoy yourself. Because you train the group and everyone individual improves. You always took the field as if it were a final. Important lessons, even for my short experience as a coach.”
Thoughts on Spalletti at Napoli?
“He has evolved further, following his path. Only now he has even stronger players and in the Champions League they have realised this new reality. From Meret, to Lobotka, Politano: he has improved everyone. I think of Simeone: a decent striker and now every time he comes in he scores goals.”
Thoughts on Kvaratskhelia?
“A champion. With that pace and touch he reminds me of Donadoni. Some people always think of foreign comparisons, but you tell me how many had Roberto’s class and won Champions Cups and Scudettos like him.”
So do you think Napoli can win not only the Scudetto but also the Champions League?
“It also depends on luck and the moment of form. We’ll have to see from now until April if everyone is fit and well, the condition of the opponents too. The conditions to go a long way are there. With that centre forward…’.
Yes, Victor Osimhen
“It’s impressive how many times he can shoot in the course of a game. He’s not afraid of anything and then also technically he has improved a lot with Luciano.”
At the top of your career you could have come to Napoli.
“True. But I was happy in Udine. And then as a fan I suffer a lot: it’s not easy for a Neapolitan to play in Naples. I think Insigne would have done even better at Inter or Milan. For someone born there you suffer more with that jersey. And the club has done well to focus on strong young players who don’t feel this pressure.”