‘We deserved success’ – Koulibaly on Napoli’s victory over Real Sociedad

Kalidou Koulibaly Napoli 2019-20
The Blues centre-back praised his side’s performance against the Spaniards and feels they were worthy of all three points

Kalidou Koulibaly opined that Napoli deserved to defeat Real Sociedad in Thursday’s Europa League encounter.

After a stuttering start to the competition where they lost 1-0 at home defeat to AZ Alkmaar, the Serie A outfit returned to winning ways with a 1-0 win at the Anoeta Stadium.

With the first-half ending 0-0, Gennaro Gattuso’s men stepped up their game in the last 45 minutes to pick up all three points at stake courtesy of Matteo Politano’s 56th-minute strike.

Despite having Victor Osimhen’s sent off by referee Craig Pawson for a second caution in the closing stages, the Whites and Blues were unable to get the much-needed equaliser.

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Speaking on the outcome against the Spaniards, the 29-year-old, who captained the Blues, said his side merited the away win, albeit, admitted that the game was tough.

"Winning tonight here was important to continue our journey in Europe." Koulibaly told the club website.

"It was essential to win the three points here in Spain after the unfortunate debut. We deserved success on a very tough field.

"The further we go, the more we are aware of our potential and tonight we have expressed them against a strong opponent such as Real Sociedad".

Despite being on the radar of several top European teams at the beginning of the 2020-21 season, the Senegal international remained at Stadio San Paolo where is a dominant figure in Napoli’s backline.

So far, he has played four out of his team’s five Italian top-flight games while lauding manager Gattuso for his new-found form.

"This season I feel great, Gattuso has given me confidence and spoken to me clearly,” he continued.

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“I've regained excellent form and I want to continue like this because I know it won't be easy to keep the level of performance so high. This year we want to get to the top."

Koulibaly is expected to be in action when the Naples-based club face Sassuolo in their next league outing on Sunday.

Four days after that showdown, they travel to Croatia to face Simon Rozman’s Rijeka FC in their next Group F Europa League outing.