By 90Min
February 05, 2018

Napoli reasserted themselves at the summit of Serie A with a hard-fought 2-0 victory away at 'plucky' Benevento, although star striker Dries Mertens was withdrawn midway through the second half of Sunday's encounter.  

(You may also be interested in: Napoli Boss Maurizio Sarri Claims Juventus Are Far Superior Following Victory Over Bologna). 

Reported by Premium Sport (via Calciomercato) the Partenopei head coach was not overly concerned about the extent of Mertens' injury saying: "We’ll evaluate Mertens tomorrow. He had a knock and a slight sprain, it doesn’t seem particularly serious."

Francesco Pecoraro/GettyImages

In fact the former Empoli coach was more concerned about giving praise to their opponents and their spirited performance than showing apprehension about the Belgium international's physical condition, Sarri said: "Benevento are alive and kicking, especially at home, and this was a tougher test than the table might suggest. It was not easy, they revamped the team over the last few weeks and were therefore difficult to predict."

Sarri has numerous admirers about the way he has transformed Gli Azzurri back into one of Italy's formidable club sides and created a style of play that is entertaining in the way the team passes the ball and dynamic in the way they attack their opponent. 

Speaking about a rumoured meeting scheduled to take place between himself and the club's President De Laurentiis to extend his contract and secure his immediate future, he said: "I can’t meet anyone on Friday, as we have a game on Saturday. I want to focus on other issues right now, so someone will meet with the President over the next few days and listen to the proposal on my behalf. There’s no problem between Aurelio and I, so it’s not an issue."

There is no doubt there would be a catalogue of interested parties that would crave to secure the services of Maurizio Sarri as their next manager after what he has achieved in Naples. Many of the the elite European clubs will be monitoring his situation at the Stadio San Paolo extremely closely. 

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