After defeating Parma on Thursday, it's now time for Napoli to shift their focus to a new match and a new country. The Supercoppa Italiana is almost here, and this morning the team flew out to Qatar to start training ahead of the match, as well as dealing with whatever events the glamour match will entail.
This will be the second time in the last three years that Napoli have faced Juventus in the Supercoppa, and the third time overall. So far the two sides have split the results with a win apiece, and Napoli will be looking to take the edge in those (admittedly informal) standings. With this match, all three of Napoli's appearances in the Supercoppa will have been against Juve, while the Old Lady will be making their tenth overall appearance in the competition, which began in 1988.
The tie is more about excitement and celebrating last year's Italian competition winners than anything meaningful, as the Supercoppa title doesn't actually count for anything. It is, however, a profitable venture; Tuttosport estimates that both Napoli and Juventus will rake in north of €3 million from the match, between participation monies, gate receipts, marketing value, and other income associated with the match and this weekend before it. That's not half bad for a long weekend's worth of work.
Normally meant to be the season opener in Italy, this year's edition of the Supercoppa was pushed back to the winter break because the original date fell in the middle of Napoli's Champions League qualification tie with Athletic Bilbao.
Also, David Lopez is a pretty great player on the pitch, but he manages to look pretty dapper while traveling too:
Who else wants to know what's in those gift bags, and maybe want one for themselves? Gift bags handed out around events like the Supercoppa are usually filled with pretty good stuff.