De Laurentiis Orders Napoli Players Into ‘Ritiro’ For Poor Form
Outspoken Napoli president, Aurelio de Laurentiis, has ordered the club’s players into a punitive training camp called ‘ritiro’ in order to arrest the side’s decline in form.
Napoli have failed to win any of their last three Serie A matches, dropping to seventh on the league table.
Carlo Ancelotti’s men lost 2-1 at AS Roma on Saturday, and club president De Laurentiis was less than impressed with what he saw.
Ritiro is a normal ritual in Italian football where a club’s players, in a bid to improve upon their performances, are secluded at a precise location for a pre-determined period of time.
Napoli’s players will spend the entire week at the club’s training grounds ahead of their UEFA Champions League game against RB Salzburg on Tuesday and Serie fixture with Genoa at the weekend.
The players will then be free to depart ahead of next week’s international break.
"The players will be in ritiro until Sunday, before the call ups for their relevant national sides," De Laurentiis told Radio Kiss Kiss.
“The ritiro is not a punishment, but an opportunity for the players to get to know each other better.”
"Ancelotti is a great manager and a gentleman.
"I have no reason to expect anything more from him. The problem, as far as I am concerned, can only be solved within the group, in the sense that it is not a job which relies on a manager but a blend.
"The players need to find the motivation not just to take on Liverpool or Salzburg, where they have reached their level, which is the reason they were bought and [shows] how they have matured in recent years."
Napoli will qualify for the knockout stages of the Champions League with victory over the Austrian side at the Stadio San Paolo.