NAPLES, Italy (AP) — Napoli winger Khvicha Kvaratskhelia was named Serie A player of the year on Friday and will be presented with his trophy on a bumper day of celebration for the southern team.
Kvaratskhelia will receive the award before Napoli kicks off its final match of the season on Sunday, at home to Sampdoria. Luciano Spalletti will also be presented with the coach of the year prize.
That will just be the start of the trophy presentations, as Napoli will finally get its hands on the Serie A trophy after the match. The team clinched it with five rounds to spare.
Kvaratskhelia was a relative unknown when he joined Napoli in the offseason from Georgian team Dinamo Batumi for a reported fee of 10 million euros ($10.7 million).
But the 22-year-old forward was fundamental in Napoli earning its first Serie A title in 33 years. So much so that he earned the nickname “Kvaradona” in homage to Napoli hero Diego Maradona, who led the team to its only two previous league titles.
“Khvicha Kvaratskhelia`s impact on the league has been impressive,” Serie A CEO Luigi De Siervo said. “Congratulations to Napoli for having brought to Italy this talent, who from the very first matches showed off his repertoire of technique, dribbling, personality and creativity.
“With 12 goals and 10 assists, Kvaratskhelia was one of the leading players for the Azzurri, who won the Scudetto and made many fans and lovers of beautiful football dream.”
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