With the remains of this past season only just starting to cool, Aurelio de Laurentiis has wasted little time before expressing support for his manager. Rafa Benitez has been the subject of rumors linking him to Tottenham, so making sure he has the public support of his boss can only help to keep him with Napoli.
To make that support as public as possible, de Laurentiis spoke to Gazzetta dello Sport this morning.
“This has been a very positive season,” De Laurentiis has told the Gazzetta dello Sport this week.
“I have seen a spectacular Napoli who have ended the season in excellent physical condition. The guys have run a lot and expressed a beautiful style of play.
“We have changed our skin with regard to our formation and our players. We hit the record of away wins and earned the same points as last season.
-Translated quote source: Football Italia
He went on to say that Benitez "understands so much about football", and declared him Napoli's "Coach of the Future". All in all, it's about as rosy a support statement as you'll ever see.
De Laurentiis also shed some light on Napoli's transfer plans, albeit in a limited fashion. He said that they intend to get "quality players" and "not just names". That would seem to suggest that rather than shooting for the big-name players around most of the rumor mongers would assume a club of Napoli's stature would go for, they'd go for players who are just as good, but at a lower profile. It's a smart tactic considering that Napoli need to get deeper, not just better.
Hopefully this season is just the start of a long, good run for Napoli under ADL and Rafa. It sounds like that's exactly what de Laurentiis is envisioning; hopefully Rafa feels exactly the same.