Hamsik: I turned down Juventus

The Slovakia international midfielder confirms that he turned down offers from several Serie A clubs before opting to remain at the Stadio San Paolo over the summer

Napoli captain Marek Hamsik says that he turned down summer moves to Serie A rivals Juventus, Inter and AC Milan, insisting that “in Italy there will only ever be Napoli”.
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The 29-year-old has his sights set on bringing silverware to the Stadio San Paolo this season but has revealed that he had options to move elsewhere.

“Yes, I can confirm this,” the midfielder told Corriere dello Sport.

“I think it is clear that in Italy there will only ever be Napoli for me and I also believe that there is a chance that I will finish my career here. It’s a serious possibility.”

Hamsik has long-term aims for European glory with the Partenopei but says that deciding between focuses on domestic and continental honours is not easy.

“I’m unable to choose because there is a strong value in both titles but the Champions League means that you are the strongest team in the world in practice,” he remarked.

But Hamsik, who has won 95 caps for his country, believes that Champions League success may be one step too far this season.
“It would give Napoli an international stature that makes your head spin. It’s nice to think about it,” he continued, “but I don’t think it’s possible.
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“I do not think that Napoli can be considered strong at that level; in the Champions League final we would take on the giants.

“But I think this Napoli a great team, capable of a wonderful style of play, for which I’m grateful to [Maurizio] Sarri. We are thus able to compete with Juventus but we just need a few wins in a row.

“Three or four consecutive victories would draw us closer and make our presence felt. We have the means to do that; in this last period we were not helped by fate and when you do not win the pessimism increases.

“But I’m optimistic, or perhaps realistic, because I know the value of our opponents.”

Hamsik will be back in action when Napoli travel to Udinese on Saturday.