Aurelio De Laurentiis heaped praise on the players despite falling to a laboured defeat against Inter by the odd goal in the EA Sports FC Supercup in Riyadh on Monday evening.

“Credit to the winners, but I saw how Napoli improved despite going down to ten men and dealing with various absentees, making it very tough for Inter.

“I went into the dressing room at the end of the game and thanked the players for how they played on the pitch. I think Napoli are getting on the right path.

“We’re right in the middle of the transfer market and besides the three players we’ve already brought in, we’ll strengthen the squad further with two more. I saw how much the team was improving tonight and I’m confident for our future.

“The wonderful thing about this Super Cup is that we’ve got to know a country experiencing extraordinary and powerful development which we will see not just in the coming years but even months. I think this is a place that will represent the epicentre of the world economy and beauty.”

De Laurentiis also touched on the refereeing and sending off of Giovanni Simeone.

“I’m sorry for [Gianluca] Rocchi for that refereeing incident, so I don’t want to comment on it or put forward arguments in line with what the fans may be thinking. I respect and understand what my role as president entails. There was a football celebration here and when one team goes down to ten men, it ruins the spectacle. That’s my regret this evening.”

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