Napoli's First Serie A Tittle In 33 Years Means EVERYTHING To The Fans

Napoli’s First Serie A Tittle In 33 Years Means EVERYTHING To The Fans

May 5, 2023
Dom Challis

Napoli supporters lit up the city of Naples as fans celebrate their first Serie A league title win in 33 years, after a 1-1 draw away to Udinese yesterday that clinched the title with a 16-point gap between second placed Lazio.

Some times it’s a close call, but for Napoli this season they’ve spent the majority of it at least 10-points clear at the top of the table before the glorious inevitable occurred. 

After the one and only Victor Osimhen fired home his 22nd league goal of the season to provide his team with the point they needed and the referee blew for full-time, the Udinese pitch was overrun by visiting fans who crowded their heroes and collected bits of the pitch as mementos. 

Back in Naples, thousands filled the Stadio Diego Maradona as they watched on the big screen and lit flares as they began their festivities that went on until the early hours of the morning. 

Napoli haven’t won a Serie A title since the days of Diego Maradona, when he helped the Naples side to two titles in the 1986/87 and 1989/90 season. When considering some of the heartbreaks the Napoli fan base has suffered over the years, It’s easier to understand why they’ve lost their marbles for their third ever Serie A win.

Just a brief history about the bad luck Napoli have had to endure – In the 1950s, after going on a spending spree, Napoli had nothing to show for it and where event relegated in 1961 to Serie B. 

In the 1974/75 season, Napoli missed out on the title by two points after being humbled 6-2 by Juventus in front of the biggest crowd to ever witness a game of football in Italy, 99,736 people. 

Further more, in the 1987/88 season after sitting in first for much of the season, a player rebellion unsettled the club and they managed only the one point from their final five games and finished behind Milan – an event that’s fed countless conspiracy theories to this day.

Finally, after gaining promotion in the 1999/2000 season, Napoli were relegated back down the following season and was declared bankrupt in 2004 as they began to reform their club in the third division a year later and began their patient journey back to the top.

Bad luck and conspiracies aside, this season was a transition year for Napoli as they cut their wage bill by 30% and let three of their most influential players leave: centre-half Koulibaly left for Chelsea, all-time top goal score Dries Mertens departed for Galatasaray, and club captain Insigne moved to the MLS to Toronto FC. 

This left plenty of room for other players to step up and that’s exactly what they did. Korean defender Kim Min-jae has positively filled in at the back, Georgian sensation Khvicha Kvaratskhelia has recorded 12 goals and 12 assists in the league, and Nigerian center-forward Victor Osimhen, has scored 27 goals in 33 appearances in all competitions. 

With Luciana Spalletti at the reigns and sporting director Cristiana Giuntoli beside him, the whole of Napoli including their fans have demonstrated patience, planning, and professionalism and to say it’s all paid off would be an understatement.  

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