Napoli sporting director Cristiano Giuntoli labelled the penalty decisions given to Juventus against his club “shameful and damaging to all of Italian football.”
Paulo Dybala converted two penalties in the second half to give Juventus a 3-1 win in the first leg of their Coppa Italia semi-final match, and Giuntoli was angered by both decisions from referee Paolo Valeri.
The first penalty was given right after the interval when Valeri ruled that Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly fouled Dybala, while the second was more debatable after Pepe Reina appeared to get a touch to the ball before bringing down Juan Cuadrado.
To add insult to injury, Napoli had just been denied their own penalty appeals for a foul on Raul Albiol at the other end.
“We thought it important to publicly thank the lads for their performance and to say we emerge defeated by two decisions that were not debatable, but shameful and damaging to all of Italian football,” Giuntoli said after the match.
“On the first penalty, Dybala knocks the ball on and seeks contact for the penalty. I thought the first one was frankly more of a spot kick, but after watching the replay this one isn’t right either. The striker goes looking for the contact.”
“On the second Reina gets the ball, then he certainly cannot disappear and thus he contacts the player too.”
“What’s more, that happened after a penalty was not given to us, considering that two of them knocked down one of our players. The decisions were shameful.”