Napoli don’t expect Koulibaly to leave but Gattuso is still nervous


The center-back has been linked with a number of clubs but is expected to stay at Napoli for now.

Napoli sporting director Cristiano Giuntoli believes star defender Kalidou Koulibaly will stay with the southern Italian club, despite ties to Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain during this summer transfer window. Kalidou Koulibaly had been closely linked with Premier League giants Manchester City, but Pep Guardiola’s side struck a deal to sign Benfica center-back Ruben Dias on Sunday.

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Defending French champions PSG are also said to be interested in the Senegalese following the departure of Thiago Silva, while Manchester United and Liverpool have already been linked with the Napoli defender. Asked about Koulibaly ahead of Sunday’s crushing 6-0 win over Genoa, Giuntoli told Sky Sport Italia: “The team was rounded out in January with Stanislav Lobotka and Diego Demme, who can play in several different roles. With Amir Rrahmani, [Victor] Osimhen and [Andrea] Petagna, we are full, we will now try to free players who will not have much time on the pitch.

Gattuso: “I’ll be nervous until the transfer window closes”

“I think Koulibaly is staying, we are very happy and so is he. I think he is stayingNapoli sporting director added. Kalidou Koulibaly helped Napoli keep their unblemished goal in a top-flight victory. Napoli have a perfect start to the season after their success against Genoa. Napoli have yet to concede the least goal in two Serie A matches this season, while scoring eight goals which places them at the top of the table.

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Gennaro Gattuso was also questioned about Koulibaly following Giuntoli’s comments and the Naples coach told Sky Sport Italia after the match: “I hope he stays with us, selfishly speaking, because he gives us so much both technically and as a character. The world has changed because of the pandemic and I realize that all clubs need to balance the books. I hope his departure does not happen, but I will be nervous about it until the transfer deadline day. “

Senegalese international Koulibaly has made Napoli home since joining Genk in 2014. The 29-year-old was instrumental in when Napoli won the Italian Cup title last season – the club’s first trophy since 2014. Despite Napoli’s big win on Sunday, Gattuso was quick to point out that the score was misleading: “This result is very hard and does not reflect the game“said Gattuso. “If Piotr Zielinski hadn’t scored 30 seconds after the restart it would have been a very different game. We have to focus on improving and finding the right balance because we need a balance to play this kind of soccer.”

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