Europa League important to Serie A sides - Ghoulam

Faouzi Ghoulam insists it is important for Napoli and the other Italian teams to take the UEFA Europa League seriously.

Napoli progressed as Group I winners following a 3-0 defeat of Slovan Bratislava on Thursday and will be joined in the knockout stages by Inter, Fiorentina, Torino and Roma.

"It wasn't our most difficult game of the season, but it was a win that allowed us to seal top spot and took us further in this competition, while giving us confidence ahead of games to come," defender Ghoulam told UEFA's official website.

"It could be the year for an Italian side to win the Europa League. We're supporting all the Italian teams in the competition because we know how important it is for the coefficient ranking, having more clubs in the Champions League and the Europa League.

"We're in good shape and we hope to go a long way ourselves. That's what we're concentrating on above all."

Napoli coach Rafael Benitez added: "The Europa League is a difficult competition and it's going to get even harder now with the clubs arriving from the Champions League.

"We've just got to wait for the draw now, but we know it's going to be hard no matter who we're up against."