Napoli captain and Slovakia international Marek Hamsik will have an opportunity to equal the scoring record of Diego Maradona for Napoli when they visit Roma on Saturday.
Napoli lead the Serie A having bagged 21 points this season and scoring 25 goals in the process, although the quality of the opposition they have faced could be called into question, albeit with the exception of their 4 goals to 1 trouncing of Lazio. Their trip to the Stadio Olympico should be thier biggest game on paper so far this season in the Serie A.
Roma also have 5 wins in 6 games, with an impressive win over AC Milan inclusive. Hamsik is in his 11th season at Napoli, helping the side to finish second and third, on two occasions each in the last five seasons.
The 30 year old Slovak international has scored 114 competitive goals in his stay so far , 1 goal less than Maradona’s goal tally in his 7 year spell between 1984 and 1991 in which Napoli won the only two titles in their honor.
Hamsik is coming off the back of a disappointing World Cup qualifying campaign for his nation in which they finished as the worst among the nine runners-up, which effectively eliminated every possibility of them taking part in the playoffs.
“We finished second in a difficult group and our performances deserved at least a place in the playoffs,” he said. “In the end, it all boiled down to what happened in the other groups and we missed out.”
On Napoli’s performance so far, which indicates that hey may be ready to fight Juventus for the title, although it remains to be seen how well they can cope, he said:
“Seven victories in seven matches is something incredible,” Hamsik said. “This is the strongest and nicest team in which I have played because we are aware of our strengths and that we can fight for the title until the end.”