Juventus back Marchisio in Napoli row

The Old Lady have suggested the Italy midfielder's comments were not malicious and added that those who did not understand this were only trying to stir up trouble

Juventus have issued an official statement backing their midfielder Claudio Marchisio after the 26-year-old was caught up in a heated debate with title challengers Napoli.

The Italy international had revealed that he could not stand the Partenopei which has fuelled the already fierce rivalry between two sides with Napoli claiming the comments were hugely insulting.

However, although the Bianconeri distanced themselves from the comments, they have stood by their player claiming nothing malicious was meant by the remarks and those who saw it differently were causing "unnecessary controversy."

Claudio Marchisio expressed a personal opinion during an interview with Corriere della Sera's monthly magazine Style," read Juventus' official website.

His view was clearly a reference to the healthy rivalry between Napoli and Juventus that has led to some thrilling and hard-fought matches.

No offence was intended: those who fail to understand that are simply seeking unnecessary controversy.”

Juventus lead Serie A by five points and are seven points ahead of third-placed Napoli.