September 24, 2021

‘Life would be easier if we all had a bit of Koulibaly’ – Napoli coach Spalletti

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The Italian coach is pleased with the work ethic displayed by the Senegal captain after his international duty

Napoli manager Luciano Spalletti has hailed Kalidou Koulibaly for reporting to training immediately after he landed in Italy from his international assignment with Senegal.

The 30-year-old captained the Teranga Lions to back-to-back victories as they kicked off their 2022 Fifa World Cup qualifiers against Togo and Congo.

After Senegal’s trip to Brazzaville on Tuesday, Koulibaly was said to have changed his itinerary in order to be available for Napoli’s Serie A encounter against Juventus on Saturday.

Spalletti, in his press conference, described the rock-solid centre-back as an exemplary leader after he reported for training without going home.

“Koulibaly changed flight twice to speed things up, then got to the airport and went directly to the training ground without even stopping off home first. That’s remarkable!” Spalletti said as per Football Italia.

“In terms of presenting practical examples that others can follow, he is excellent. If we all had a bit of Koulibaly, life would be easier.”

Aside from Koulibaly, Spalletti has Algeria’s Adam Ounas, and Nigeria’s Victor Osimhen available and Cameroon’s Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa is also in contention to make his Serie A debut following his loan move from Fulham.

On Wednesday, the Parthenopeans confirmed that they won their appeal to reduce Osimhen’s two-game suspension to one after he was shown a straight red card in their opening league match against Venezia on August 22.

“Napoli have successfully appealed to the Sports Court of Appeal to reduce Victor Osimhen’s suspension from two games to one,” read a statement on the club’s website.

“Given that the striker already served the first match of the suspension against Genoa, he will be available for selection this weekend.”

Napoli are fifth on the Serie A table and they are looking to extend their 100 percent start to the 2021-22 season at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona having won their opening two games (vs. Venezia and Genoa).

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