Napoli coach Rudi Garcia says the blame for their 3-1 loss to Fiorentina lies with him: “There is bitterness, frustration, it’s a bad result.” The Partenopei found themselves behind after just 7 minutes with Josip Brekalo giving La Viola the lead, before Victor Osimhen equalised from the penalty spot. Giacomo Bonaventura and Nicolas Gonzalez added goals in the second half to secure a big win for the visitors and once again raise questions about Napoli’s title defence this season.
Speaking with DAZN after the match, Garcia accepted responsibility for the loss and explained his decision making during the match:
“There is bitterness, frustration, it’s a bad result. We shouldn’t have conceded the first goal, the penalty before half-time should have given us an extra boost. Then there was the great chance to double, on the third goal we were all forward to try to equalize. It’s not good to be so unaggressive on the defensive line, when you lose and only get four fouls it means something is wrong.
“What didn’t work? On the high pressing we had to be sharper in finding Osimhen, we didn’t give anything away in the output but we failed to exploit the depth. Then Anguissa got injured and we changed our game but we have to improve in helping the centre-backs with the two wide players. With the entry of fresh players it was a bit better but it wasn’t enough. It was not our day, it was a bad night.”
“Why Cajuste? To give more weight in midfield, we tried very little. The first cross of the first half was made by Natan, that’s not normal. We lacked aggressiveness, we lacked effectiveness, that made the difference between us and them. It’s not a tactical problem but a mental one, we had to stop the attacks before they arrived in the area. We have to work on this aspect, we have to be smarter and spend fouls earlier. We have players who are usually more technically precise, when you lose balls against an opponent of quality and defend with little aggression you suffer even if the data says that we took only three shots in front of goal.
“What is needed now to reset? In the heat of the moment we must not be too harsh, the responsibility for this defeat is mine, but I did not expect it. Now we look ahead, we missed a great opportunity to stay in third place. From Verona onwards the goal is to win, until we manage to make three wins in a row it will be like this and for Napoli it’s not enough.”