'I want another Scudetto' - Maradona calls for Napoli success on 60th birthday

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The Gimnasia de La Plata boss, who remains one of the game's most renowned figures, hopes that his former side can achieve domestic glory this term

Diego Maradona has called upon his old club Napoli to claim another Serie A crown as a present for his 60th birthday, as the Argentina legend celebrated reaching a different kind of milestone.

The Gimnasia de La Plata boss, who remains one of the game's most renowned figures as he enters his seventh decade, spen many of his halcyon playing days with Napoli, who he helped power to two top-flight titles and the UEFA Cup during his stay.

The striker also won the World Cup for his country during his time in the Campania region and remains something of a cult hero in the city where he emerged as a larger-than-life sporting figure.

Now, in an open letter published in Corriere dello Sport, Maradona has called on last season's Coppa Italia victors to go one step better and end Juventus' chokehold on the Scudetto, offering words of support to manager Gennaro Gattuso as he looks to steer the club to a first title since Maradona's own success in 1990.

"I'd like to say a big thank you to everyone for the good wishes today," the former forward wrote. "I hope to be able to celebrate it with titles that can make me happy.

"I wish for my Gimnasia to be able to challenge for the championship this coming season - but it is also true that I wish for another Scudetto to be won by Napoli.

"To Gattuso, I say, go on like this. With your determination and the ability of your side to play, I cheer for you. I want to tell you that while there are people who boast of having played for Barcelona, Real Madrid and Juventus, I am proud to boast that I was part of Napoli. I hope one day that you will be able to too."

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Former Milan boss Gattuso, who succeeded Carlo Ancelotti last December, oversaw his first managerial triumph against Juventus in June's Coppa Italia final, with his side running out 4-2 penalty shootout victors following a goalless draw at Stadio Olimpico.

Maradona meanwhile is facing a difficult campaign ahead as he looks to reverse the fortunes of Gimnasia, who flirted with relegation from Argentina's top-flight last term.

 

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