Napoli became the Italian champion for the first time in 33 years, but before the fans of the Neapolitan club had time to rejoice and celebrate the title, unpleasant news fell on them, one worse than the other. There is a chance that next season the “golden” team will fall apart. And then the fall of the “Parthenopeans” may turn out to be even steeper than the rise.
Here are many interesting texts about the “golden” season of “Napoli”.
Everything about the Napoli championship: hidden heroes, team price, atmospheric retrotext and more
First of all, the future in Napoli of the team’s main builder, Luciano Spalletti, is in question. According to press reports, the 64-year-old coach is in conflict with the club’s owner, Aurelio De Laurentiis. According to Corriere dello Sport, Spalletti’s relationship with the boss eventually soured.
The other day, De Laurentiis made a comment that confirms the rumors about his conflict with Spalletti rather than dispels them.
“Of course it would be better if he stayed. But freedom is an incomparable and invaluable blessing, I cannot clip anyone’s wings, just as no one should clip my wings. The main thing is to be grateful. And to the one who gave, and to the one who received, “said the owner of Napoli.
Earlier it became known that the Napoli management took advantage of the clause on the automatic extension of Spalletti’s contract until the summer of 2024. Moreover, Luciano himself was allegedly not even warned about this. Spalletti, according to Italy, is asking for a salary increase from 2.8 million euros to 4.5 million euros. According to La Repubblica, De Laurentiis met with the coach and offered him a contract until the summer of 2025 with an increase of lower salary, up to 3.5 million euros. Luciano didn’t like it, he refused.
After the game with Inter, Luciano himself made a harsh statement: “The decision has been made. You don’t change your mind every day. The situation has been brewing for a long time. When you work from morning to night, some things tend to grow in your head. If you are not sure that you can give everything that these people deserve, then it is correct to think. You think it through, draw a conclusion, and stick with it. It’s not something that comes out of nowhere.”
Aurelio De Laurentiis and Luciano Spalletti
Photo: SSC NAPOLI/Getty Images
Spalletti’s break with Napoli will certainly benefit neither the manager nor the club. Before the arrival of this coach, the “Partenopeas” had not won the Scudetto for 33 years, however, Luciano also won the championship in 30 years of his career alone with Zenit of Russia. Spalletti and Naples are perfect for each other, and it is not a fact that they are happy without each other.
La Gazzetta dello Sport already knew the names of Spalletti’s possible replacements. De Laurentiis is considering a return to the club Rafa Benítez, who won the Coppa Italia and the Super Cup with Napoli. Other candidates: former Tottenham manager Antonio Conte, Atalanta’s Gian Piero Gasperini, Fiorentina’s Vincenzo Italiano and even Christophe Galtier, who is failing at PSG. They also wrote about Roberto De Zerbi from Brighton. However, it is hard to imagine how De Laurentiis will work with Conte, who is constantly demanding signings. It’s a one-season choice, I guess.
Meanwhile, reports continue to emerge about the potential departure of Napoli’s leaders in the summer 2023 transfer window. It seems that the transfer of central defender Kim Min Jae is actually a settled issue. According to II Mattino, the transfer of the Korean to Manchester United is almost complete, what’s more, he is already preparing a home in England. However, PSG and Liverpool are still in the running for Kim Min Jae. The centre-back’s contract includes a €45m release clause, and Manchester United are willing to pay Napoli a further €15m to ensure the Korean moves to Old Trafford.
But of course the main transfer target of all the best clubs in Europe to Napoli is Victor Osimhen. The most expensive player of the new Italian champions, valued by Transfermarkt at €100m, De Laurentiis estimates the 24-year-old Nigerian, who has scored 28 goals this season, to be even higher. They say that the owner of the Neapolitan club asked potential buyers for 150 million euros. At the same time, Manchester United itself is leading the fight for Osimhen, despite competition from Chelsea, Newcastle and PSG. Although the boss of the Parisians, Nasser Al-Khelaifi, has developed a great relationship with De Laurentiis after previous transfers from one club to another.
But Khvicha Kvaratskhelia, despite the interest in him from top clubs, will probably remain in Napoli. According to journalist and insider Nicolo Schira, the Georgian winger will extend the contract. The current contract between Kvaratskhelia and the club is valid until the summer of 2027, and the new agreement will be until 2028. But the central point of the story, of course, is not in the extra year, but in increasing the salaries of the players. . So far, Khvicha earns 1.1 million euros per season, while the new contract guarantees him 3 million euros.
Kvaratskhelia have not scored in their last 12 games in all competitions, but it is still impossible to say that the Georgian winger has deflated at the end of the season. Not all of these games were bad for Khwicha. In some of them, Quaradone was simply unlucky at the end, or the partners didn’t realize the chances he created.
A year later, the contract of another key figure ends – Piotr Zelinsky. According to CalcioNapoli, Maurizio Sarri, who worked with him at Napoli, is trying to attract the Pole to Lazio. Zelinski can replace Sergei Milinkovic-Savic at the Roman club if the Serb remains sold.
A story about the players who could have taken the gold from Napoli, but didn’t
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Also, De Laurentiis needs to resolve the issue of buying Giovanni Simeone and Tangay N’Dombele, respectively, from Verona and Tottenham. It is very likely that both will not stay at Napoli, although they have contributed to the championship. The son of the head coach of Atlético did not score enough (eight goals per season, in the Italian championship – only three), and the center is too expensive for his level.
Finally, another championship champion is likely to leave Napoli: sports director Cristiano Giuntoli. According to La Gazzetta dello Sport, this specialist is a priority target for the new management of Juventus. However, Giuntoli is also in the spotlight for English clubs, in particular Tottenham, Manchester United and Chelsea.
In any case, Napoli without Spalletti, Osimhen and a few other players from the championship clip will be a different team. But they just took the gold.