Luciano Spalletti claims Napoli's draw with Salernitana only 'extends' title party and dismisses critics as 'professional hitmen on roofs waiting to shoot at you'
- Spalletti unfazed after Salernitana draw
- Napoli pegged back on big day
- Must wait for first title in 33 years
WHAT HAPPENED? On the day that Naples sang, cheered and celebrated as a city in anticipation of Napoli's imminent Serie A title win, they were made to wait that little bit longer as Spalletti's men were held to a 1-1 draw by a dogged Salernitana outfit. But the head coach remained upbeat in his assessment after the game, refusing to be bogged down by the result.
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WHAT THEY SAID: Spalletti told DAZN: “We wanted that extra goal to give to them. As far as I am concerned, this just extends the enjoyment, as I am not uncomfortable being in this position at the top of the table. It just carries on the celebration a little longer, as I am convinced we’ll get those two points.
“Even if by chance we should win, it’ll give me more pleasure to see the people celebrate, because we sense the affection loud and clear in our ears and minds. We represent their dream, so consequently it is only right they feel that dream."
Quizzed on Napoli's struggles against teams who deploy a low block, Spalletti remained jovial: “There is only one way to avoid criticism in this sport and that is to avoid being a coach. Don’t worry, there are professional hitmen on roofs waiting to shoot at you!"
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Spalletti's Napoli have been imperious in Serie A this season and conquered every challenge put before them, crafting an exceptional league campaign that sees them 18 points clear of second-placed Lazio and on course for their first Scudetto since the 1989-90 season, when a Diego Maradona inspired side won their second title in four seasons.
Mathias Olivera thought he had fired in the goal that confirmed Napoli as champions, but a strong performance from goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa and a goal from Boulaye Dia ensured Salernitana left Naples with a point.
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WHAT NEXT FOR NAPOLI? Gli Azzurri can confirm themselves as champions and win the Scudetto for just the third time in the club's history with a win against Udinese on Thursday.