I’ve a football bucket list as long as your arm and our 4th Homefans trip would see us in the city of Naples to witness take on their arch rivals Juventus but to note, this match wasn’t high up that list but bumped to the top as it was the chance to see this match with Napoli as champions – A rare moment in footballing history – and before I blog all things Osimhen, I’ll start with the city itself.

It’s certainly got an ‘edge’ to it but you’ll struggle to find a city more obsessed by the game than here. Every street, shop, vehicle and even traffic light appeared in some way to pay homage to Napoli FC, the 3 rd Scudetto title or ‘D10S’. One street hung out the upside-down flags of each of their Italian rivals (a sign of defeat), whilst the facea of 1 apartment block had the images of each player arranged in a 4-3-3 formation.

Locals sipped de-icer blue Maradona Spritzers or Forza Napoli cocktails and if you fancy some culture, submerge yourself within the 120ft underground within the Catacombs of San Gennaro or 530m long Galleria Borbonica tunnels. Built as a safe escape route for monarchs following the 1848 riots the tunnels are now littered with discarded vintage cars, water cisterns and the remnants of a military hospital as up to 10,000 Neapolitans sheltered there during WW2.

Culture, Cuisine, and Chaos: Immersing in Napoli’s Delights

Culture not your thing? Then try the food or nightlife. From the upmarket Taverna Dell’Arte or rustic 5 Euro pizzas at At L’Antica Pizzeria Da Michele, where we waited for 70 minutes to sit at the table where Julia Roberts filmed a scene from ‘Eat.Pray.Love’. It was worth the wait, especially as we sat in a nearby bar whilst our table number was called up.

As for bars, the hipster Shanti Art Music or Superfly Bars were as hip as anywhere you’ll find in Berlin or Belgrade. Every watering hole we visited paid homage to one man. Diego Armando Maradona, whilst Bar Nilo had a shrine dedicated to him, containing a lock of his hair – and multiple expletives about Juventus hung from the walls.

Matchday itself was for us to pay homage to the great man. Not Maradona or Osimhen but our match host, Roberto, a walking encyclopaedia of all things Naples, Napoli FC and traditional, foaming lemonade. Our guided tour around the Quarteri Spagnoli (Spanish) district, where at the top of Via Emanuele De Deo you can find ‘the symbol of Naples’. A 20ft high mural of Maradona painted in 1990 by local artist Mario Filardi. Better still was a funicular railway upto the upscale Posillipo district for the ultimate football nerd destination – The old apartment of Maradona himself. The Stadio Diego Armando Maradona soon after.

A Rusty Stadium, Roaring Atmosphere: Napoli vs. Juventus Experience

It’s rusty. The wind whistles through the exposed terraces and the view was atrocious but the atmosphere. The atmosphere was superb and this is why we go to the football. They really don’t like Juventus in these parts and its showed. The lead Curva A Capo perched high above our heads and lead the flag waving and chanting. “Jump or you’re a Juve fan” accompanied by deafening whistles, whilst a series of flares and bottles were launched in the general direction of the away end in an attempt to knock Juve’s Capo off his perch.

The sound and surge of bodies that greeted Napoli’s late winner only added to the experience. 2-1 to Naples off the pitch but I’d make that a 3-1 win for events off it. 4, if you count the brilliant 3 days in such a charismatic city.

Written by Duncan Quinton