This is some very strange news, breaking today…
Napoli’s chairman Aurelio De Laurentiis claims that his side could play their home matches in the Champions League this season at Bari’s home ground, which is on Italy’s east coast, 261km away from the San Paulo.
This is because of a row with the council who own their stadium and the seats inside it. They do not meet UEFA regulations and as a result, Napoli have been granted a special exemption in recent seasons to continue playing there…
There were plans for the seats to be replaced in time for this campaign, but they’ve fallen through, and now the outspoken Italian has made a serious threat.
De Laurentiis told Corrierre dello Sport: “For me, it’s a nightmare. Such a bad stadium limits the status of Napoli at an international level.
“It’s a shame. For this reason, I say enough: I don’t want any more controversy, so I’ll build my own stadium.
“And that’s that. We can’t go on like this anymore. Nobody can tell you to do anything if you put in your own money and have the land to build a stadium.
“In the meantime, I’ve asked UEFA to authorise us to play Champions League matches at Bari.
“I’ll pay for 1,000 buses out of my own picket so Napoli fans can attend the match.”
Of course, Liverpool fans will have already paid for flights and accommodation for the trip to Naples, which was just as exciting as the Paris and Belgrade adventures.
A train across the country to Bari takes about three and a half hours, we’ve discovered, so it wouldn’t be impossible, but potentially very inconvenient.
We’ll wait for any updates and provide the news as it comes.