Napoli: Higuain operating at 80 per cent

The striker has scored five times in 12 Serie A appearances for his new club but the Partenopei are expecting even more from the Argentine over the course of the season

Napoli doctor Federico Di Nicola believes Gonzalo Higuain is only operating at 80% of his full potential as he acclimatises to playing regular football once again.

The Argentina striker completed 90 minutes just 12 times for Real Madrid during his final season at the Santiago Bernabeu, before completing a €42 million switch to Naples over the summer.

Six goals in 12 Serie A appearances have followed for Rafa Benitez’s men but the 25-year-old striker hasn’t found the back of the net in his last three fixtures – not that the club’s team doctor is overly concerned.

Di Nicola told Tuttosport: “Gonzalo is doing great things. I know his past and he was used to playing a lot less with long recovery times.

“Now, however, he is playing a game every three days. To date, he has played more games than last season in Madrid. He is once again becoming an athlete.

“As a footballer I would say he is currently at 80%. I am sure that he has enormous potential and exceptional physical gifts that will awaken.”

Higuain will have another opportunity to add to his Napoli goalscoring tally when the Partenopei travel to Lazio on Monday evening.

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