Napoli and Slovakia’s Brilliant Icon

Full Name: Marek Hamšík
Birthdate: July 27, 1987
Place of Birth: Slovakia
Playing years: 2001 to Present
Position(s):

Central/Attacking Midfielder
Inside Forward
Supporting Striker
Football Club (Current): Napoli

Award(s):

Six-time Slovak Footballer of the Year
Peter Dubovský Trophy (2007, 2008)
Serie A Young Footballer of the Year (2008)

Formative years

Hamšík got his start in football at small youth team Jupie Podlavice, helping them into the top youth division. In 2002, he joined high-ranking Slovak club Slovan Bratislava as a 17-year-old talent and later made a move to Brescia with their Under-19s. He made his debut for the club in the match against Chievo and continued to play for the team until 2006-2007— a remarkable season where he netted ten goals.

Notable Skills/Style of Play

– Leans towards layoffs
– Takes set pieces
– Far out attacking runs
– Talent to both create and score goals
– Takes set-pieces
– Very strong short passes

Football Career

Napoli

For a transfer fee of €5.5 million, Hamšík was recruited by Serie A club Napoli where he has since been a mainstay in the starting lineup. He ended his first season with the Italian team as their top scorer and in
2009, he was voted as the best young Slovak footballer for the second time. He became the first foreign player to earn Serie A’s Oscar del Calcio award and he scored the winning-goal for Napoli for their first ever victory in the UEFA Champions League. In 2012, he helped The Partenopei secure their fourth Coppa Italia cup over unbeaten champions Juventus by scoring the team’s second goal at the 83rd minute of the match. At age 22, he was named captain of the team after Paolo Cannavaro’s transfer to Sassuolo and the club went on to win in the 2014 Coppa Italia Final and the 2014 Supercoppa Italiana. In 2017, at the height of his game, he broke Diego Maradona’s all-time Napoli scoring record with his 116th goal in a 3-2 triumph against Sampdoria in Naples.

National Team

Hamšík played at junior level for Slovakia in both UEFA European Under-17 Championship and UEFA European Under-19 Championship. He was also a part of the Slovakia national Under-21 team and is a regular in the Slovakia national team. He was also assigned captain in Slovakia’s first foray into the FIFA World Cup in 2010 and he led the national team to victory over defending champions Italy in final match of the group stage. He also helped his team advance to the second round of the UEFA Euro 2016 tournament where he finished as Slovakia’s top scorer.

100th Serie A goal

A long-range strike marked Marek Hamšík’s 100th Serie A goal but his hopes for a Scudetto vanished after a 2-2 draw against Torino. Napoli last won the Scudetto in 1990 with fired goals from Diego Maradona. The Slovak midfielder has conceded the Serie A title to rivals Juventus but thanked fans for their incredible support in Napoli’s title chase. In an interview, Hamšík stated regret for not being able to complete the task at hand but remains optimistic for the next season. “Next season? We’ve shown our strength… and we’re already among the best clubs in the league. It’s a good base to fight for the title next season too.” Reports have linked Hamšík to China and Premier League giants Chelsea but his agent has recently shut down the exit rumors for the soon-to-be honorary Neapolitan citizen.

The Napoli captain intends to stay in Naples.

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