Benitez: Higuain must become a leader at Napoli

The Argentine has scored freely since his arrival from Real Madrid last year but the Partenopei coach wants more from the forward


Rafael Benitez has urged Gonzalo Higuain to prove that he can be a real leader of men and inspire Napoli to victory over AC Milan on Sunday.

Higuain has established himself as a fan favourite at the San Paolo, having hit 24 goals in 46 Serie A games since joining the Partenopei from Real Madrid in the summer of 2013 for €37 million.

However, Benitez wants more from the Argentina international, arguing that the forward must understand that he is not only obliged to put the ball in the back of the net, but also lift everyone around him.

“Gonzalo must understand that he’s our most important player,” the Spaniard is quoted as saying by the Gazzetta dello Sport.

“He must be the leader of the squad and drag all of the lads along with him, which he has the ability to do.”

Napoli are sixth in the standings heading into the Serie A clash, just one place and three points above their hosts.

The Rossoneri are coming off the back of a 1-0 loss at Genoa but Benitez has the utmost respect for the San Siro side and believes their pace up front is a particular threat.

“Filippo Inzaghi’s team have quality and energy in every department,” he added. “They have so many fast players in attack that could put us in real difficulty.

“Beyond the tactical formation, they have so many quality individuals, so it will be an intriguing encounter.”

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