Napoli captain Marek Hamsik revealed that they were all convinced that they had won the Serie A last season after beating Juventus at Turin
On April 22, a late header from Kalidou Koulibaly secured Napoli a 1-0 win at Juventus’ home ground to move them within one point of the Serie A leaders.
The Light Blues were greeted by thousands of supporters at the airport afterwards and felt “invincible”
Former coach Maurizio Sarri sensed danger and tried to warn the squad against getting overconfident.
But Hamsik admits they failed to listen to their departed manager after losing 3-0 to Fiorentina, just a few days later, with Juventus later winning the league title for a seventh successive time.
“Koulibaly took off into the sky and smashed in for 1-0. It was the most wonderful night since I’ve been at Napoli. But, with hindsight, there is only one lesson we can learn from that game,” Hamsik wrote on his autobiography “Marekiaro”, via Football-Italia.
“Yes, we had beaten Juventus, but we hadn’t won anything. The euphoria took away our concentration from the final rounds of the season and that is why we missed the target.
“And yet, that night we were convinced that the Scudetto would finally be ours, that Napoli had it back in their hands after 30 years.
“On the plane, we knew the city would welcome us with celebrations and we felt invincible. There were even some who were already thinking about next season.
“Maurizio Sarri’s voice tried to take us back down to earth: ‘We’ve won nothing yet.’ But none of us really listened to him. What if that was the fatal moment that made us lose the Scudetto?
“After the 3-0 defeat to Fiorentina, it was far too easy to ask ourselves that question.”
Napoli will face Juventus at Turin today with the kick-off to begin at 18:00 (GMT +2).