The Spain international is confident that the Argentine can become as revered in Naples as his compatriot and hopes to seal the Serie A title this term
Napoli goalkeeper Pepe Reina believes that striker Gonzalo Higuain can have a similar effect on the club and the city of Naples as Diego Maradona.
The legendary Argentine led the Partenopei to two Serie A titles during a seven-year spell at the club between 1984 and 1991.
Higuain, who moved to the San Paolo from Real Madrid this summer, cited his compatriot as a source of inspiration at and Reina feels his team-mate can become revered by fans.
“You can breathe football here, it’s almost like a religion,” he told Marca.
“The god is obviously Maradaona and will be for many years. In any restaurant in Naples you can see souvenirs of him, from shirts to photos.
“I hope the same can happen with Higuain. He’s the idol of the moment.”
Reina, who moved to the club this summer on loan from Liverpool, went on to outline his ambition to win the Serie A title this year, but acknowledged the threats that Roma and Juventus pose to their plans.
“The idea this year is to win the Scudetto. Juventus are the reigning champions of Italy and are used to playing in the Champions Leauge, while Roma are doing very well and don’t have any other cups.
“I don’t know what might happen in the city if we win the title. The people are very similar to those in the south of Spain. There’s certainly no lack of enthusiasm and passion.
“Playing in the San Paolo is extraordinary.”