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Napoli rejected £95m offer for Koulibaly amid United links – De Laurentiis

SoccerNews in Serie A 19 Dec 2018

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Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis confirmed the Italian side rejected a £95million offer for reported Manchester United target Kalidou Koulibaly.

Star centre-back Koulibaly has been linked with Premier League strugglers United amid reports the Red Devils had a £91m bid turned down by Napoli ahead of the January transfer window.

Discussing Koulibaly’s future, De Laurentiis told reporters: “We are more than capable of developing top players and keeping them too.

“When they offer £95m for a centre-back, that is a figure that has never been offered before, it means this is a top player.”

Koulibaly has established himself as one of the best defenders in the world since joining Napoli from Genk in 2014.

The 27-year-old Senegal international – who has made more than 150 appearances in all competitions for Napoli – has featured in all 16 Serie A games this season, with the club second behind Juventus.

“When we had Gonzalo Higuain who scored all those goals with Rafa Benitez and [Maurizio] Sarri, even though he missed some penalties and skipped the Champions League for a season, we had top players,” De Laurentiis said.

“When I hear lies like ‘there are no top players at Napoli,’ it drives me crazy. Was Edinson Cavani not a top player? Signing a second striker like Dries Mertens into a centre-forward who scores 30 goals, getting a talent like Arkadiusz Milik who had two serious injuries and still performs at the highest level… it means we Neapolitans like to complain.”

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