Barcelona may not be in their best form, but neither are Napoli and Gennaro Gattuso has warned his players against complacency.
With the Serie A coming to a close after two more games, Gattuso already has the Champions League on his mind.
Barcelona will host the Partenopei on August 8 at the Nou Camp in what is expected to be a high-octane affair.
With the Catalan side desperate to salvage something from their season, Gattuso knows they will be blazing guns out in less than a fortnight.
The Italian manager watched on as his side secured a 2-0 win over Sassuolo in their most recent outing on Saturday night. However, the game could have taken a completely different turn. VAR was heavily involved and Sassuolo saw of their goals disallowed due to offside.
Despite avoiding defeat, those goals exposed a defensive crack that Gattuso must address.
Lionel Messi hinted Barcelona could lose to Napoli in his rant after his side’s loss to Osasuna in their penultimate La Liga match. To be fair, Setien and company have been a shadow of their former selves since the return of football.
Gattuso isn’t falling for any of that and warns his side they would be punished if they remain complacent against the Spanish giants.
“Against Sassuolo we played correctly, but Barcelona have [Lionel] Messi, who gets the ball, leaves 10 players behind and passes it underneath seven.” the Napoli boss said after his side’s victory as quoted by Football-Italia.
“If we play thinking that they are in poor form then we’re heading to the hospital or the cemetery.”
Gattuso explained why the Sassuolo game was a decent test ahead of the return leg at the Camp Nou.
“It was a good test because [Sassuolo] have a philosophy similar to that of Barcelona,” he added.
“Barcelona are Barcelona, but we will go to the Camp Nou to play our game and try to pass.
“We will not be defeated before playing.
“It will be a very important 90 minutes.”