• Serie A - Transfer round-up: Napoli eye Walcott
    10:07 | 10/06/2013

    Rafa Benitez is reportedly eager to bring Arsenal’s Theo Walcottwith him to Napoli this summer.


    The new coach is looking to the Premier League for reinforcements and has already been linked with a host of names.

    According to Tuttosport, Rafa has set his sights on Walcott as the idea figure to complete his 4-2-3-1 system.

    The 24-year-old England international’s remarkable pace would really stand out in Serie A and his wages are thought to be within Napoli’s parameters.

    Benitez had already tried to sign Walcott for Liverpool several years ago, but this season he scored 14 goals in 32 Premier League games.

    Napoli would have plenty of money to invest if Chelsea or Real Madrid meet the €63m asking price for Edinson Cavani.

    “We require another right sided second striker,” said Napoli President Aurelio De Laurentiis this week.

    “We are closing in on someone in this area, but I can’t say anything more in order to avoid the asking price going up.”

    After reports of Chelsea offering €55m for Edinson Cavani, nowReal Madrid have reportedly offered Napoli cash plus Gonzalo Higuain.

    The bidding war is heating up for the Uruguayan hitman, who Napoli have said they won’t sell for less than his €63m release clause.

    This morning Sky Sport Italia and Tuttosport both claimed that Chelsea had raised their proposal to €55m, but it was rejected along with another offer worth €30m plus Fernando Torres.

    According to Sport Mediaset and Spanish radio station Cadena Ser, Real Madrid reacted to the news by improving their own bid.

    The offer on the table from the Merengues is now cash plus striker Higuain, who is in negotiations with both Juventus and Arsenal.

    The proposal also includes the gate from a prestigious friendly between Napoli and Real Madrid, plus a series of performance-related bonuses.

    According to Sky Sport Italia though, Juventus president Andrea Agnelli and director general Beppe Marotta will fly to Spain on Sunday to discuss a move for Higuain.

    Agnelli aims to have face-to-face negotiations with Real Madrid president Florentino Perez in a bid to put Juve in pole position for the striker.

    Antonio Di Natale’s agent laughed off reports of an imminent move to Juventus.

    The 35-year-old striker will be out of contract in June 2014 and there were rumours today in the Italian media that Juve were planning a swoop.

    “There’s absolutely nothing true about this story of Di Natale going from Udinese to Juventus,” agent Bruno Carpeggiani told Tuttojuve.com.

    “It must be a typical transfer session headline-grabber.”

    Di Natale had already turned down an offer from Juventus last year because he wanted to see out his career in Udine.

    He scored 23 Serie A goals in 33 games this term, plus three in six Europa League appearances.

    Inter are not expected to take up their €5m option for Walter Gargano, sending him back to Napoli.

    The midfielder arrived on loan last summer following a row with coach Walter Mazzarri, so the fact this tactician has now taken over at San Siro made his stay unlikely.

    According to Sky Sport Italia, Inter have already informed Napoli that they will not be taking up their €5m option to make the move permanent.

    The Nerazzurri aim to reinvest that money by bringing in a new midfield figure, with the hot favourite being Radja Nainggolan of Cagliari.

    Uruguayan international Gargano managed 28 Serie A appearances this season.

    There are two unusual transfer rumours around Napoli, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Morgan De Sanctis and Sunderland’s Simon Mignolet.

    La Repubblica newspaper claims Ibrahimovic is sending signals he is ready to leave Paris Saint-Germain and would appreciate the opportunity to play for Napoli.

    The Partenopei would be able to afford the former Milan, Inter and Juventus striker if they sold Edinson Cavani for €63m.

    According to Sky Sport Italia, Napoli are in talks with Sunderland for an exchange of goalkeepers.

    Paolo Di Canio’s club is interested in signing veteran De Sanctis in a swap with sought-after Mignolet.

    De Sanctis retired from international duty this year on his 36th birthday and president Aurelio De Laurentiis noted on Twitter over the last few days that the goalkeeper is appreciated by new coach Rafa Benitez.

    Udinese talent Luis Muriel has fuelled speculation of an Intermove, saying: “I’ve supported them since I was a kid.”

    The 22-year-old scored 11 goals in 22 Serie A games this season and has been linked with Juventus, Napoli, Fiorentina and Inter.

    “In Colombia when I was a kid all my friends supported either Juventus or Milan,” he told SportWeek.

    “In order to stand out from the rest, I decided to cheer on Inter. I’ve supported them every since.”

    Roma received positive news on the availability of coach candidatesMarcelo Bielsa, Gerardo Martino and Rudi Garcia.

    The Giallorossi have said they’ll announce their new Coach by the middle of next week and he is “90 per cent likely to be foreign.”

    Laurent Blanc has slipped rapidly down the wish-list after negotiations appeared to have reached a deal, while Roberto Mancini is also out of the running.

    The three candidates now appear to be Bielsa, Newell’s Old Boys boss ‘Tata’ Martino and Lille tactician Garcia.

    Bielsa is a free agent, as on Friday evening Athletic Bilbao confirmed they would not be renewing his contract.

    “Tata Martino is our coach… until July,” Newell’s director of sport Gustavo Dezotti told Tuttomercatoweb.

    “Martino would be perfect for Roma and I can see him doing very well in Italy. We’re talking about a great coach with an important future ahead of him.”

    Lille also confirmed Garcia is technically available for talks with the Giallorossi.

    “We have a very courteous rapport with Garcia and I am not putting any pressure on him to make a decision,” President Michel Seydoux told La Voix du Nord.

    “Deadline? I don’t like that word, because it suggests setting an ultimatum and I am not at war with Rudi. Let’s just say I’d like to be informed of what’s happening next week.”

    According to Yahoo

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