The Napoli boss had a laugh with his Liverpool counterpart following the Serie A side’s 2-0 win over the Reds on Tuesday
Liverpool may have tasted defeat to Napoli in their Champions League group opener on Tuesday, but Carlos Ancelotti was quick to reassure Jurgen Klopp that the loss was, in fact, a good omen.
And while Liverpool had their struggles away from Anfield in the Champions League group stage a year ago, Ancelotti was quick to point out that it did little to stop them lifting Europe’s top trophy at the end of the campaign
Napoli have now won five of six matches at home against Premier League sides in the Champions League, while the loss continued a trend for Klopp, who has now lost in his last five trips to Italy across all competitions.
And, while the result may have little to say about the final outcome in Group E, Ancelotti was impressed with the way his club managed the match against the European champions.
“I want to see a team that believes in itself and its quality,” he said. “I really liked the way we played when we weren’t in control.
Llorente helped out. The players were tired and the first goal was from a long ball, which isn’t our usual approach, but it’s not an insult to do that sometimes. This team must know how to do everything.
“We brought in important players who improve the quality level of the squad and have different characteristics to what we had before. I have to keep them motivated and that’s not easy, especially when UEFA still have this rule forcing you to keep a short bench and it’s painful sending players to the stands.”
Despite beating Liverpool in Italy last season, Napoli crashed out of the Champions League at the group stage, finishing third behind the Premier League side and group winners Paris Saint–Germain.