Snap shot: Maradona's Napoli reign supreme, 1989

An inventor, a midfielder known as Rambo, a future UEFA Champions League winner and Diego Maradona – meet SSC Napoli's UEFA Cup-winning class of 1989.

©Getty Images

With SSC Napoli facing VfL Wolfsburg in the UEFA Europa League quarter-finals, we recall their UEFA Cup-winning team of 1989 – the last time they reached the last eight of a European competition. Inspired by Diego Maradona, the previously unheralded Partenopei enjoyed success both at home and, culminating in this scene after their 5-4 aggregate win over VfB Stuttgart in the final, abroad.

1. Raffaele Di Fusco
The eternal deputy, goalkeeper Di Fusco made only 34 Serie A appearances for Napoli despite being on the books for most of the period between 1983 and 1998, barring brief spells with US Catanzaro and Torino FC. One of those outings came as a striker: during a 1989 game against Ascoli Calcio, with several team-mates struggling, he came on 11 minutes from time for Careca up front. Now goalkeeping coach at US Lecce, he invented and patented the 'trajectory deflector' – a tool for training keepers to react to late deflections.

2. Ciro Ferrara
The Naples-born defender left his home-town side in 1994 and spent the remainder of his playing days with Juventus, winning the 1996 UEFA Champions League among other trophies. Capped 49 times by Italy, he retired in 2005 having become just the third player to rack up 200-plus Serie A outings for two different clubs. Initially assistant to Azzurri boss Marcello Lippi, he later coached Juventus, Italy's Under-21 and UC Sampdoria. Sacked in December 2012 by the Blucerchiati, he is now a television pundit.

3. Diego Maradona
One of the true greats. The 1986 FIFA World Cup winner said goodbye to Napoli in 1991 after seven seasons. During that time he helped the southern team lift the UEFA Cup, the Coppa Italia and two Serie A titles (they had not won the Scudetto before, nor have they since). Known as the 'Golden Boy', the 1.65m playmaker featured in Spain for Sevilla FC before returning to Argentina where he ended his career with CA Boca Juniors in 1997. As a coach, he led Argentina in the 2010 World Cup, then managed al-Wasl FC in the United Arab Emirates.

4. Francesco Romano
The 'regista' or deep-lying playmaker moved on from Napoli immediately after this UEFA Cup triumph to join Torino. He then represented AC Venezia and US Triestina – where he claimed a Serie C championship – before retiring in 1995 after a short stint at AC Palazzolo. Never capped by Italy despite being in the Azzurri squad for the 1988 UEFA European Championship, Romano became a football agent.

5. Antonio Carannante
Like Romano, left-back Carannante also quit Napoli in summer 1989, signing for Lecce. He subsequently turned out for Piacenza FC, AS Avellino 1912 and SS Nola before hanging up his boots in 1996. He began coaching in Napoli's youth system before working as coach and director of sport for the regional association of Campania, of which Naples is the capital. He now works alongside former Napoli defender Giuseppe Bruscolotti at ASD Gladiator in the Italian fifth tier.

Maradona outruns a defender during the first leg
Maradona outruns a defender during the first leg©Getty Images

6. Giuliano Giuliani
The goalkeeper parted company with Napoli after helping the Partenopei to the Scudetto in 1990 and headed to Udinese Calcio. He died from an AIDS-related illness in 1996, aged 38. Not spectacular but extremely efficient, Giuliani will always be remembered as the keeper whose work underpinned Napoli's greatest period, his two-year stay scooping him two league titles and a UEFA Cup winners' medal.

7. Fernando De Napoli
Labelled 'Rambo' for his fighting spirit in midfield, De Napoli departed his namesake club in 1992 to switch to AC Milan as they won two Scudettos, though he compiled only nine Serie A appearances in two terms at San Siro. Capped 54 times, he finished playing with AC Reggiana 1919 in 1997. De Napoli continued to serve Reggiana as a director until 2005 when they were declared insolvent and he decided to quit the game for good. He now co-owns a wine bar near Bologna. 

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