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Former £34.5m Arsenal target sets sights on emulating Maradona

Napoli’s Gonzalo Higuain has spoken of his upcoming ambitions.

The Argentine international – who was a summer transfer target for Arsenal – has professed his desire to emulate idol Diego Maradona by winning the World Cup this summer followed by the Scudetto next year.

Rafa Benitez signed the Argentine from along with Spanish duo Jose Callejon and Raul Albiol in a triple summer swoop from Real Madrid. The trio have all become a regular fixture in Rafa’s starting 11 – with Higuain already finding the net 12 times and assisting a further seven in his debut Serie A season.

In an exclusive interview with La Gazzetta Dello Sport, the 26-year-old has declared his enjoyment at being in Naples and said the fans make him feel like a king.

Higuain added: "This is a very important for my career, the relationship with the people here is excellent, as well as with my peers. I still have a four-year contract and here I am like a king."

The Argentine striker spoke of his idol Diego Maradona, and the affection that arguably the world’s greatest footballer received at Napoli. Asked whether he could ever reach that level, Higuain responded with calmness:

“I don’t have the weight of that responsibility, but I want to do as Maradona did. First win the World Cup and then the Italian championship, just as Maradona did who triumphed in Mexico with Argentina in 86 before becoming unstoppable at Napoli.”

“If I achieve that crowning dream it will truly be the best."

The former Arsenal transfer target has a great chance of lifting silverware in his first season at the club. Higuain once again found the back of the net as Napoli overcame Roma 5-3 on aggregate to advance to the final of the Copa Italia where they will face Fiorentina in May.

Those Champions League tears displayed against Arsenal now seem a long time ago for Napoli’s £34.5m record signing.

image: © Jan S0L0

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