'Cavani was stunning' - Napoli boss Mazzarri hails hat-trick hero

The Uruguay international's strikes helped ensure an easy victory over Roma on Sunday night, and the forward himself is glad that the club are on the right track after a bad spell

Napoli coach Walter Mazzarri hailed “stunning” Edinson Cavani after his goalscoring exploits in their 4-1 win against Roma on Sunday night.

The Uruguay international scored a hat-trick against the Giallorossi to put his tally up to 16 in the league this season, propelling him over AC Milan’s Stephan El Shaarawy in the Serie A goalscoring chart.

The Partenopei coach praised his star striker for stealing the show, but admitted that there is still room for improvement despite being pleased with the comfortable victory.

“Cavani was stunning. He became a top player at Napoli,” Mazzarri told reporters after the game. “Roma are on a par with Juventus, so we put in a great performance tonight.

“It was a real achievement to score four goals. Of course, some will say we were just lucky, or other such rubbish I’ve heard recently.

“I did get angry with my players in the first half, as we ran risks by making a few too many mistakes.

“Goran Pandev has the timing of passes in his mind and we prepared this game trying to avoid Roma’s offside trap.”

Speaking after the win, Cavani was delighted that they began 2013 with a win having seen themselves stumble lately, and hopes that the club can return to the Champions League with a top-three finish.

He said: “I think the win is more important for us than the table. People thought we were done for after a couple of bad results, as if we had somehow collapsed, but this was a show of professionalism and this squad deserves to go forward.

“The Champions League could be our target, but there is the entire second half of the season to go and we must try to keep calm, keep our heads down and keep going.”

The forward added: “My objective this season is to take Napoli as far as possible and achieve the targets this club has set.”