Fabio Quagliarella believes meetings with Napoli always represent “special” occasions from a personal point of view and hopes Sunday’s clash against the Partenopei proves to be no exception.
The Campania-born frontman represented his hometown side during the 2009/10 season before joining Juventus on an initial loan deal with the option to make the move permanent.
Three years on and two Scudetto titles later, Quagliarella, who was bought outright in June 2011, remains in the black and white stripes and is again relishing the prospect of locking horns with his former employers.
Speaking on JTV’s ‘Filo Diretto’, the 30-year-old began: “I’ve been involved in this fixture for the past two to three years. Any clash against my former teams is special for me, I’ve got wonderful memories from everywhere I’ve played. I hope it turns out to be a great game, also for the fans watching at the stadium.”
Plenty is at stake in Sunday’s encounter at Juventus Stadium as both sides aim to keep up their hot pursuit of league leaders Roma, currently three points out in front following a stunning start to the season.
And Quagliarella, who also identified Fiorentina and Inter as teams to watch out for, predicts plenty of twists and turns ahead of May’s climax to the season.
“We’re at the start of November, there’s a long way to go in the championship and it’s an exciting year. Roma are enjoying an extraordinary run and deserve all the points they’ve claimed. Us and Napoli are behind and chasing and I think everything will be decided in the final sprint.”
Looking at the bigger picture, Quagliarella believes the Bianconeri will have to tidy up on certain individual mistakes but assures there is plenty of room for optimism after standing toe-to-toe with Real Madrid on Tuesday night.
“We need to try and cut down on certain errors, more so than team mistakes, we’re committing them as individuals. We’re still in the running for every competition and we can also hold our own in the Champions League and go through to the next round.
“Now it all depends on us. We need to play how we did against Real Madrid and in the last few games, facing the next two clashes with the bit between our teeth, because in one way or another we need to reach the knockout stages.”