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Laudrup: Napoli draw a reward

Michael Laudrup believes Swansea's mouth-watering Europa League last-32 clash against Napoli is reward for his side's hard work during the group stages.

Last Updated: 17/12/13 at 19:10 Post Comment

Michael Laudrup: Europa draw tough but intriguing

Michael Laudrup: Europa draw tough but intriguing

The Dane admitted the draw could have been kinder with the Italians having gone out of the Champions League despite beating Arsenal last week.

Laudrup told the club website: "It is probably the hardest tie we could have had.

"I said before the draw that I felt Napoli and Juventus were the best teams in the competition, but I also said that my players and our fans deserved a big club.

"The squad has already played 27 games so far this season, which has not been easy, while the fans have given fantastic support throughout.

"Over 1,000 fans travelled to St Gallen last week which is amazing and says everything about the supporters at this club.

"Napoli is certainly a big club; with a very good team and a top manager. They won all their home games in the Champions League and for a club to fail to qualify after picking up 12 points is unheard of.

"It is certainly a tie for everyone to look forward to. It will be a great experience for the team, the club, the fans and the city."

The Swans host the first leg at the Liberty Stadium on February 20, with the return against Rafa Benitez's men taking place at Stadio San Paolo on February 27. The winners will then face either Porto or Eintracht Frankfurt in the last 16.

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I

think all those names linked to United exits make sense. Kagawa has never really looked like hitting the form he had at Dortmund and Fellaini is radioactive after last season (even though I think he's been unfairly singled out for criticism). Nani and Anderson have had more than their fair share of chances so they are done, and Hernandez deserves better than warming a bench.

ted, manchester
The Insecure Gossip

H

e'll be off to Spurs (or better) in January and I don't blame him. Looking forward to re-signing Grant Holt as his replacement though.

notalentjones
Benteke ignoring speculation

I

n fairness, he does look absolutely shattered in that photo.....

FairyNuff
Shaw told to shape up

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