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Feb 26, 2013

Mazzarri confident of Napoli title challenge

Napoli were unable to break down Udinese in their 0-0 draw in Serie A

Napoli boss Walter Mazzarri believes his side is still well poised to challenge Juventus for the Serie A title this season, despite the current league leaders maintaining a six-point gap over their nearest rivals.

The Partenopei were held to a 0-0 draw by Udinese on Monday night, missing a chance to move within four points of Juve. The two sides clash in the Serie A on Friday in a match that could prove decisive in the title race, although Mazzarri believes Napoli's changing fortunes of late prove they will always be contenders.

"I remember that before the Siena game (a 2-0 win in December) we were behind Lazio and Inter," he said. "Now we are four-five points ahead of third place in the table and just six points behind the first.

"In eight matches the situation has changed, we have reversed it around. For me, the game against Juventus is like all the others. There are still 12 games before the end, everything can happen."

The stalemate with Udinese reflected the tone of the match, as chances were few and far between, although Mazzarri insists he was pleased with the performance of his players.

"I am satisfied with this performance," he said. "I praised my players. They [played] a great match against a team that have already beaten some strong opponents. We did out best, but could not manage to score.

"When my team plays like this, I have to be happy. Unfortunately in football there are times when nothing goes right, but sooner or later we will score again and this spell will be broken.

"We analysed the chances we generated, what we are able to do. With some more luck, victories will come. I am satisfied, I enjoy watching my team producing such a high level of football. My guys gave all they could.

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