Luciano Spalletti praised his side's resilience in limiting AC Milan's advantage to a single goal despite having to see out the first leg a man short.
“We played with character and attitude. I'm happy with how the lads performed,” was the coach's initial assessment following Napoli's 1-0 defeat at San Siro in the Champions League quarter-final.
"I have a great team with a wonderful future. Tonight we showed we were able to dig in to stay in the tie and hold our own against Milan even with ten men.
"I think [Frank] Anguissa's sending off was unnecessary and I don't understand the yardstick used in giving out cards. In the first half [Rafael] Leao broke the corner flag – that's a yellow card any day of the week. I also don't get why [Piotr] Zielinski was shown a yellow and [Rade] Krunic wasn't.
“Of course it makes a difference when we're without certain players but I have a very strong squad. They're good lads, sometimes a little naïve but technically superb.
"Next week we'll be playing in our stadium and I hope we don't see the surreal atmosphere of our league match. We saw how big a help the San Siro crowd was tonight.
"This match is in the past now and we can't change it. We have to look forward and think about the next one. The tie was open and it's still open.”