A number of Napoli players will be taking part in the international matches scheduled for early September, and two will face each other.
You remember that big tournament last month? You know, the big gathering of the top international sides in the world? In Brazil? Germany won it? What's it called... oh yeah, the World Cup. That one. Well, that's all in the past now, and now the next round of international matches is already upon us.
Nine Napoli players have been called up for September's matches, and will play in a total of nine matches between them. Two of them, Camilo Zuniga of Colombia and Rafael Cabral of Brazil, will face off directly in an international derby of sorts on September 5th. The tie will serve as a rematch of sorts from the World Cup quarter final, which saw Colombia lose despite Neymar being knocked with a spinal fracture after a hard collision with Zuniga.
Another pair of Napoli players will be involved in a big World Cup rematch, as Argentina will face Germany on September 3rd, bringing the two teams from the final together again much quicker than normal. Gonzalo Higuain and Mariano Andujar will both be with Argentina for the tie, and it should be a fun one as Argentina look to even the score. Another Napoli World Cup participant, Walter Gargano, will be in a pair of friendlies for Uruguay, against Japan on September 5th and South Korea on September 9th.
The other four Napoli players will be involved in a mix of friendlies and the first stage of group qualifiers for the 2016 European Championships. Marek Hamsik will be captaining Slovakia in a warm-up friendly against Malta on the fourth before taking the stage against Ukraine in Kiev in their first qualifier on the 8th. Both Gokhan Inler and Blerim Dzemaili will also be in action on the 8th, as Switzerland takes on England in Basel.
Dries Mertens will be in action twice for Belgium, first in a friendly against Australia in Liege on the 4th, then heading over to Brussels to host Israel in their own Euro qualifier. After Belgium's quarter-final knockout in the World Cup, they'll be looking to build on their successes and become a power in Europe. Coming out with a convincing run in a group that includes both Wales and Bosnia-Herzegovina could go a long ways towards that goal.
Hopefully Napoli's representatives in these matches all do well, but the biggest wish of Napoli fans is that they simply come back healthy and ready for the club's next run of matches.