Gennaro Gattuso took over the job of Napoli, which rediscovered their lost mojo under Maurizio Sarri and cut a satisfactory figure in the Champions League under Carlo Ancelotti. Gattuso left San Siro after spending a brief period without experiencing enough sweet memories. In 2018, he witnessed AC Milan lost to Juventus in the Coppa Italia, and at that point of time, he might not have even realized, God would give him a second chance.

In a night of Italian football festival at Stadio Olimpico, where Maurizio Sarri, who was a hero at Napoli after he almost led the club to a Serie A title in 2018 before losing out to Juve, was looking to beat his former club in order to claim his first trophy in Italian football. But it was Gattuso, who laughed the last smile and even, he and Napoli let Cristiano Ronaldo lose two consecutive finals for the first time in his league career.

Juventus were the favourites to win despite a dull show in the semifinals.

Their start was promising as well.

Juve’s best opportunity arrived in the first five minutes of the final, but Meret was equal to Ronaldo’s low shot after Dybala pounced on a defensive error.

Meanwhile, at the other end, Lorenzo Insigne’s curling free-kick bounced away off the left-hand post.

Bufon felt the heat as a goal was heading into the interval, which blocked with his legs from Diego Demme’s drive and then touched another Insigne attempt around the post.

Napoli substitute Arkadiusz Milik blasted off target from a dangerous position in the second period, while Insigne was similarly wayward when he encountered a tight angle.

Further Buffon heroics were reserved for the final seconds of stoppage time, as the World Cup winner got down to Nikola Maksimovic’s powerful header before helping to divert Eljif Elmas’ close-range follow-up away via the upright.

After a goalless ending, the match would be decided by penalties.

Alex Meret – only playing due to David Ospina’s suspension – saved from Paulo Dybala, before Danilo missed the target entirely and triggered a celebration in the Napoli camp.

They had conquered Stadio Olympico!

Napoli showed better intent than Juve.

A lot was expected from Cristiano Ronaldo, but he lacked the cutting edge.

Ronaldo just had three shots and hit the target with once whereas he did not get the chance to take a spot-kick as Gennaro Gattuso’s men were declared winners before his turn came around.

After losing the Supercoppa Italiana to Lazio at the end of last year, it is the second straight final defeat for Juventus. Again, Ronaldo has contested many domestic and continental finals with every team he has represented so far in his illustrious career, but never before he had lost two in a row.

Gattuso was a happy man. As a manager life has not been rosy for him and losing his sister gave him enough sadness and for which this victory was much needed to calm down a restless heart, which had digested enough pangs and anxieties.


Napoli and Gattuso would start dreaming big!

Facebook Comments