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‘Napoli want the Europa League’ – Mertens

Dries Mertens says Napoli have “great players” and insists they want to win the Europa League as well as the Scudetto.

The Partenopei lead Serie A after 23 matches, and are also competing in the Europa League following their Champions League elimination.
“It’s going very well,” Mertens said in an interview with Le Buteur.
“We have a great team with great players and the results inevitably follow from that. We’re leading the league and we’re managing to keep up the pace.
“Now we regret our premature Champions League exit a bit, but hey, we still have the Europa League and we’ll try to win that trophy.
“This season I’ve been able to finish off moves and the credit goes to the whole group.
“We have a team that likes to play with the ball and that suits me really well and allows me to score a lot of goals.
“This season it’s a tough march and I can score to help us maintain our place at the top of the table.”
Le Buteur is an Algerian website, so Mertens was inevitably asked about his teammate, Faouzi Ghoulam.
“When Ghoulam arrived in Naples he was a bit shy at first. He was quiet, always in his corner, but after that I saw him taking steps forward.
“In a short time he’s become a very important part of our team. I think everyone saw how he started this season, quite simply he’s in top form.
“He’s really contributed a lot to our wonderful run in Serie A, if we managed to stay on course at the start a lot of it was down to his six assists and also his two goals.
“For a left-back his stats are just amazing.
“Faouzi after watches the best players in his role, like Marcelo who is doing wonderful thing with Real Madrid.
“He insisted that he had to be like Marcelo, and I think at the moment Ghoulam is the best in his position. I’m very happy for him.
“His injury [a cruciate ligament rupture in November] was a big blow for the whole group, not just for me.
“Personally it hurt me a lot, because Faouzi had incredible momentum. 
Now he’s coming back well, and even if he’s not 100 per cent he can still surprise us in training with his pinpoint passes and non-stop running.
“What he does is incredible, I hope he’ll be back playing as soon as possible.
“I have to say that Ghoulam’s return will be very important for the title run-in. As for his extension, I think it’s credit to the club that they’ve renewed the best players.
“If we hope to win trophies we have to keep our best players.
“Ghoulam is a very attacking player and it’s honestly always great to play with him in his channel. When [Lorenzo] Insigne isn’t there I move more to the left and I have fun with him.
“He’s a player who can travel 18km per game, which is incredible for a left-back. I don’t know how many assists he’s given, but I’m sure he’s set me up a lot both last season and this season.”

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