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Napoli: The sensation of the Calcio

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20.08.2011 17:18

Napoli: The sensation of the Calcio

Sandra Sarmiento

Barša's rival in the Joan Gamper Trophy finished third in Serie A last season and will play in the group stage of the Champions League. With only one preseason defeat, the Italians will make their League debut next weekend, at home to Genoa.

Napoli: The sensation of the Calcio

The 2010/2011 season was a historic one for Napoli. They finished the League in third place and 20 years later they are back in the European showpiece competition. Five years ago they won promotion to Serie A and last year they were one of the sensations of the Calcio. This year they’ll play the group stage of the Champions League. Walter Mazarri, one of the great architects of the Napoli success, is working to maintain the competitiveness of a squad that has had an almost unblemished preseason, and are visiting the Camp Nou on Monday to play in the Joan Gamper Trophy.

Lavezzi and Cavani, the stars

They are the stars of the Napoli attack. Both are internationals and played in the recent Copa America. Edinson Cavani, from Uruguay, has become one of the players most loved by the Italian fans. 33 goals in 47 games speak for themselves. He was one of the top scorers last season in Serie A and will start the new season with a lot of self-esteem after winning the Copa America with his country. For his part, Argentina's Ezequiel Lavezzi is an ambidextrous striker, and very competitive. He scored 9 goals last season and complements Cavani really well.

Victor Ruiz, central defender for the future

He came to Napoli last January from Espanyol. He’s a young left-sided central defender with a great future. He’s only 22, and together with Thiago, Montoya, Mi˝o, Jeffren, and Bojan, amongst others, won the European Under-21 Championships this summer. Last season he played 7 games with Mazarri’s team. Another player known to Spanish football fans is the Italian goalkeeper Morgan De Sanctis, who played for Sevilla in the 2007/08 season.

One defeat in preseason

Napoli have played six preseason games. They’ve won four, drawn one, against the Uruguayan team Pe˝arol, and lost one, against Sevilla. Their last friendly was played just seven days ago against Mallorca in Son Moix, and they won 1-0 with a goal from the Colombian, Zu˝iga. The Slovakian, Marek Hamsik, with 3 goals, and veteran Lucarelli, with 4, are their top scorers in the summer friendlies.

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