MILAN (AP) – The stadium named after the Argentine legend erupted in joy as Giovanni Di Lorenzo became the first Napoli player since Diego Maradona to lift the Serie A trophy.
Napoli had won their first Italian league title in 33 years five days earlier, but had to wait until the final day of the season to receive the trophy in front of their fans at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona.
The players dance enthusiastically while raising the scudetto to the tune of the song “We are the Champions”.
Captain Di Lorenzo was in charge of marking the time so that everyone in the stadium started singing: “We, we are the champions of Italy.”
The celebrations continued for two hours after the trophy was handed over. At the beginning of the party, a tribute to Maradona was performed, with fans chanting “Diego! Diego!”
Napoli brought the curtains down on a memorable season with a 2-0 win against relegation-bound Sampdoria side.
Victor Osimhen scored a penalty in the 64th minute to put Napoli ahead. It was the 26th goal of the season for the Nigeria international, who became the first African player to become Serie A’s top scorer.
Argentina’s Giovanni Simeone’s tally rises to 85. He celebrated by lifting the number 10-stamped shirt that Maradona had worn in the match.
Luciano Spalletti, who announced earlier this week that he would no longer lead the team, received the Coach of the Year trophy before kick-off. Winger Khvicha Kvartskhelia received the player of the season award.
Kim Min-jae and Osimhen received the trophies for best defender and forward respectively.
The players also celebrated with their children. Osimhen wore a small mask similar to that of his father during the match.
The San Siro stadium was also the scene of an emotional moment as Milan said goodbye to Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
The 41-year-old Swedish striker could not hold back his tears outside as club fans unfurled a large banner that read “Godbye” – a game with God in English and goodbye. Ibrahimovic made a heart shape with his hands and kissed.
The Rossoneri beat Hellas Verona 3–1 and Spezia lost 2–1 to Roma, who played in the Europa League final after a midweek defeat to Sevilla.
Verona and Spezia were tied on 31 points and either would have to play a playoff to stay in Serie A.
The playoffs will henceforth be played at a neutral ground.
A hat-trick from Tun Koopminers helped Atalanta beat Monza 5-2 to qualify for the Europa League.
Atalanta were in fifth place, one point above Roma, who also qualified for the competition.
Juventus won 1–0 at home against Udinese to finish and will play in the Conference League unless UEFA sidelines them due to their numerous legal problems.
In addition, Bologna secured a 3–2 win over Lecce.