Whether or not to celebrate when scoring against your old club is quite the debate in football.
While Robin van Persie and David Luiz would suggest it’s simply meaningless sentiment, Cristiano Ronaldo and Dennis Law staunchly observe the practice. It seems to differ from player to player.
Therefore, upon Gonzalo Higuain finding the net against Napoli in the colours of one of their biggest rivals, everyone was curious as to how he would react.
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Big money move
Although no transfer this summer can truly match the financial ramifications of Paul Pogba’s Manchester United switch, Higuain’s move isn’t far behind.
The Argentinian striker became the third most expensive player in history when he signed for Juventus for an astonishing €90 million. The transfer brought an end to Higuain’s wildly successful three-year stay at Napoli.
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Having switch La Liga for Serie A in 2013, the 28-year-old hammered home an impressive 91 goals in 146 appearances in Naples. This was crowned in an immense final season that saw him fill his pockets with a record breaking 38 goals.
Consequently, it was no surprise that the Italian league juggernauts of Juventus were so desperate to deprive their rivals of their key asset. They had to break the bank for him, but it appeared a shrewd investment nevertheless.
Unsurprisingly, the ex-Real Madrid man hasn’t taken long to settle in with the Old Lady with seven goals already to his name.
As a result, there was a very real possibility that Higuain would find the net upon his reunion with Napoli.
With the game in the balance at 1-1, Sami Khedira miscontrolled a long pass into the penalty area with Higuain latching onto the ball. With Pepe Reina flat footed, the Argentinian lashed it home left-footed to give Juventus the lead.
Damningly too, it proved the winning goal in a victory that augmented the Old Lady’s lead at the top of Serie A. It can be seen below:
What is notable though is the fact that Higuain, despite the ecstasy of scoring, refused to celebrate. It proved an utterly respectable gesture from the 28year-old towards the club that, ultimately, reignited his career.
The Juventus man simply raised his hand apologetically and walked away before being mobbed by his buoyed teammates.
While Napoli fans won’t thank him for consigning them to defeat, it can only be imagined that his calm reaction has softened the blow. After all, nobody was forcing him to act the way he did.
So not only is Higuain a classy finisher, but a man of true class himself.
Do you think players should celebrate against their old teams? Have YOUR say in the comment box below
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