Marek Hamsik’s agent said he is puzzled by the way the Napoli captain is being treated by coach Maurizio Sarri but insists there is no bad blood between the pair.
Hamsik became the Serie A club’s all-time record scorer this season, overtaking Diego Maradona. However, the Slovakian midfielder last played a full 90 minutes in the 5-0 win at Cagliari on Feb. 26 and his agent said he does not understand why Hamsik is rarely getting much more than an hour of action.
“I gave my opinion a few months back and I believe it’s something between the coach and the player,” Martin Petras told Radio Kiss Kiss. “It’s not nice to see him taken off because it then seems like people are saying he’s not performing, but if you look at the statistics, then you see that Marek’s are better even than last year.
“It looks strange from the outside, but certainly they will have some sort of hierarchy. At least in these games [like against Juventus on Sunday], you’d like to see him play to the end and Marek has always believed and hoped he would.”
Hamsik, 30, has scored six goals in 34 league appearances this season, although only seven of those games were over the full duration.
Last season, he found the back of the net 12 times in 38 outings, playing 18 full games.
Hamsik has scored a club record 119 goals for Napoli and is one goal shy of a century in Serie A.
Napoli face Fiorentina, Torino, Sampdoria and Crotone in their final four games of the season with Hamsik bidding to become the first Napoli captain since Maradona in 1990 to get his hands on the Scudetto.
Just one point now separates Napoli from leaders Juventus following a 1-0 win in Turin on Sunday night.
“Certainly Marek’s still got room for a tattoo of the Scudetto,” Petras said of his heavily inked client. “Even if there weren’t any space left, he’d just do it on his forehead.”
Ben Gladwell reports on Serie A, the Italian national team and the Bundesliga for ESPN FC, UEFA and the Press Association. @UEFAcomBenG.