The city of Naples has long awaited a league title and hero since the heroic and glory days of Diego Maradona with Napoli FC. The Italian club won two Serie A titles, 1987 and 1990, after they paid a then world record fee of £6.9million for the mercurial Argentine playmaker.
Their long wait of 28-years could come to an end this season, same way the Pharaohs of Egypt ended their FIFA World Cup jinx after waiting for an equal number of years. Belief is high within the ranks of Maurizio Sarri’s team, as they have consistently taken apart and scored goals for fun this term much to the delight of their loyal fans.
Napoli are top of the Serie A standing after seven rounds of matches, enjoying a two point lead over closest challengers and champions, Juventus. In comparism to their rivals for the title, Juventus, AC Milan, Inter Milan and AS Roma, they spent the least on recruitment this past summer, and look to do a Leicester City on the rest of the chasing pack.
The team have evolved from the days of Walter Mazzarri and Rafael Benitez, though a few players such as Christian Maggio, Marek Hamsik and Pepe Reina still remain in the team. Sarri has built his teams success on a solid defensive and attacking unit, which has seen them dominate matches even in European contests against the very best.
Highly rated Senegalese international defender Kalidou Koulibaly has been rock solid at the back, clearly the leader in that department and impressively chipping in with a few goals at the opposition end. Marek Hamsik and Jose Callejon have impressively run the show from midfield, while Lorenzo Insigne and Dries Mertens have formed a fearsome partnership in attack which continues to produce goals.
Though Mertens might not be an out-and-out forward, he has made the Napoli faithful’s easily forget about the departure of Gonzalo Higuain with his eye catching goal return over the past two seasons, leading the chart this season with nine strikes in all competitions.
Considering the inconsistent form of Juventus amid a number of departures, AC Milan seemingly not ready just yet to mount a serious title challenge likewise AS Roma, Napoli might just roll back the glory days and celebrate a first league title in almost three decades at the Stadio San Paolo if they can maintain their early season consistency.