Problems ahead for Napoli

At the end of the 2011/12 season, Napoli were the talk of the footballing town. Fans had begun to rave about Walter Mazzari’s, with the Partenopei becoming one of the finest in Europe. The club had made a splash in the Champions League and despite finishing fifth in Serie A; a Coppa Italia win under the belt had left the team with something to smile about.

However, while struggling to compete with the likes of Juventus and Inter, to name two, the likelihood of their star players being poached. The three tenors – Edinson Cavani, Ezequiel Lavezzi and Marek Hamsik – had all been attracting interest across the continent and it was more than likely that one would be sold.

In the end, Argentine Lavezzi departed for big spending Paris St. Germain, but question marks remained over the future of the remaining two members of the scalpel scarp trident. The problems worsened on Tuesday, it has to be said.

A two point deduction and six month bans for Gianluca Grava and, perhaps more importantly, captain Paolo Cannavaro, both pending appeal, have come on the back of back-to-back defeats for Napoli, that latter of watch came at home to struggling Bologna.

While Grava and Cannavaro are likely to have their bans lowered, much like Antonio Conte for Juventus, the two point deduction will hinder their chances of returning to Europe’s elite competition. With it, the chances of Hamsik and Cavani leaving increase tremendously, with the Partenopei expected to struggle as the months draw on.