Napoli appear to be preparing for the sale of Kalidou Koulibaly, and the Italian media have been making that clear over the past week or so.
There’s an absolute insistence in Italy that Manchester United offered €100m+ for the defender during the last summer transfer window, and that Napoli turned it down.
Such is the insistence, it’s not too hard to believe these claims are coming from the Serie A club, perhaps part of a plan to hype the player’s value. If they’ve turned down €100m from Manchester United, then it creates the idea of a huge transfer fee being needed.
That plan has hit a couple of problems, one foreseeable and one not so much.
Firstly, Koulibaly turns 29 years of age in June, and spending around €100m on a defender of such an age is excessive.
Secondly, he hasn’t had the best season, as Napoli have struggled to hit the heights expected of them.
Gazzetta dello Sport report that if Manchester United return with an offer of the same value, Napoli ‘won’t say no’.
That has to be unlikely, though.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer signed Harry Maguire last summer, and central defence isn’t the club’s greatest area of need.
With Napoli getting the idea of a sale out there, then it means a transfer is on the horizon, but where that to has got to be unclear, despite repeat claims from Italy that both Manchester clubs and PSG are keen.
That €100m figure will likely have to come down.