Naples is a chaotic city, beautiful for it at times. There’s a distinct passion in the region and a lot of that is directed towards the local football club.
There are endless arguments in the Italian sport media about various views on Napoli, and it’s not too hard to imagine those same rows taking place in the city’s bars. Despite not being Italy’s biggest club, there’s a case to be made for Napoli having the most local coverage, with websites and radio stations largely dedicated to the Serie A side.
Carlo Ancelotti knows all about this, with the Everton manager being in charge at Napoli before his move to Goodison Park. He’s still talked about on a daily basis, and there’s endless disagreements over his time with the club and conduct when leaving.
Everton’s relative success this season has prompted many in Naples to insist that Ancelotti was undervalued, and that has been encouraged by Gennaro Gattuso’s recent struggles.
This has got right up the nose of Vincenzo Imperatore, an Italian journalist writing for Il Fatto Quotidiano. He’s annoyed at people supposedly looking down on Gattuso, and describes them as ‘pseudo-intellectuals belonging to the unproductive middle class’.
Ancelotti comes into it because his general demeanour is seen by many as superior to that of Gattuso, and the journalist adds of the Everton boss: ‘They even magnify his farts, making them pass for melodies that emanate French perfumes.’
Mentioning ‘pseudo-intellectuals’ no less than six times during his rant, Imperatore gives the example of people being impressed by Ancelotti ‘sipping tea’ recently after an Everton match. The suggestion is some in Naples prefer the perceived class the manager brought them, compared to the fight of Gattuso.
It’s likely the Naples media will argue about Ancelotti for years to come… maybe it’s worth a trip to the city, just to throw the name into a bar conversation and sit back and watch the show.