thumbnail Hello,

The Spaniard says the club are taking strides forward under his charge and went on to discuss Liverpool's capitulation on Monday

Rafael Benitez feels Napoli's Coppa Italia victory and Tuesday's 3-0 win over Cagliari show that the club are moving in the right direction.

The Partenopei beat Fiorentina 3-1 in the Stadio Olimpico on Saturday to lift the cup before overcoming Cagliari on Tuesday, strolling to victory thanks to goals from Dries Mertins, Goran Pandev and Blerim Dzemaili.

Benitez believes the side have taken great strides forward under his leadership since he took over at the helm last summer, replacing Walter Mazzarri who left for Inter.

"I said beforehand that the Coppa Italia final wouldn’t change anything, but clearly the victory and tonight’s 3-0 win mean we are on the right path," he told reporters.

The Spaniard left Lorenzo Insigne out of Monday's squad despite an excellent display in the cup final, in which he scored a double, but Benitez defended his decision to rotate Napoli's XI.

"Our problem is that we have so many players who work every day that changes have to be made. I had to change Pepe Reina, so that used up a substitution, while I thought today Duvan Zapata and Radosevic deserved to play.

"I think you can vary tactics. For me at the start it was more important to give the players a sense of certainty with a tactical shape that was always the same.

"We can easily play with a three-man midfield too, but as time goes on we get to know each other better and can work on different options."

The 54-year-old was then asked for his thoughts on his former side Liverpool’s incredible capitulation on Monday after they threw away a three goal lead to draw 3-3 with Crystal Palace, surely bringing an end to their title chances.

“Liverpool are a team who are very focused on the attack," he replied. "I think they expected to score more goals in order to improve the goal difference with Manchester City.

“This happens in English football, as it is never over until the final whistle, you just need to throw a couple of balls into the box and it can all change."

Related

From the web