Despite a 2-1 defeat to Manchester City, Napoli coach Maurizio Sarri was full of praise for his side, and feels they did well against a world class team.
A four minute spell early in the first half saw Rahim Sterling and Gabriel Jesus bag a goal each to put City in control at the Etihad Stadium. Dries Mertens had a first half penalty saved by Ederson. However, second penalty taken by Amadou Diawara gave Napoli a late consolation.
“The match has to be split between the first 25 minutes and the rest,” Sarri told the press.
“We went behind to an extraordinary side. City are super in terms of pace, technique, tactics. They deserved the goals, and we didn’t put our stamp on the game.
“Pressing without following up meant they came at us with ease, and the know how to cause problems even if you are able to press well.
“City are devastating everyone and we came to their stadium and only conceded a couple [of goals].”
After last season’s Champions League exit to Real Madrid, Sarri feels his Napoli have become a better team.
“This is a game which will give us enthusiasm, strength and morale,” Sarri continued. “I have seen a huge step forward with respect to the match against Madrid, where we took the lead.
“Here against City we pulled ourselves out of a shipwreck of the first 25 minutes. It is a step forward.
“I think City can win the Champions League, they are extraordinary and if they keep playing as they are they can go all the way.”