Manolas reportedly close to Napoli move from Roma
If reports in Italy are to believed, Greek defender Kostas Manolas is edging closer to a transfer to Napoli from fellow Serie A outfit AS Roma.
Manolas, 28, has been playing his football with AS Roma since August 2014 when he transferred from Olympiacos for 15 million euros. Earlier this year, rumours linked the Greek international defender with a Manchester United move, but the Italian media are now suggesting he is close to a Napoli transfer.
Sky Sport Italia released reports stating that Napoli are eager to sign Manolas as a replacement for the outgoing Raul Albiol. Napoli head coach, Carlo Ancelotti, wants Manolas to partner the highly-rated Kalidou Koulibaly in the centre of defence as Napoli aim to give Juventus a run for their money in the 2019/2020 Serie A while making progress in the UEFA Champions League.
According to Sky Sport Italia, Napoli are aiming to sign Manolas as part of a player exchange with Roma instead of paying a large sum of money, but the capital side want to receive Dries Mertens in return. Napoli, for their part, want to offload Amadou Diawara for Manolas.
It was stated that newly installed AS Roma boss Paulo Fonseca has tried to persuade Manolas to remain with the Giallorossi, but the player has supposedly already made his decision to join Napoli. All that remains is for the two clubs to agree on the way the transfer is handled.
Napoli do have the opportunity to activate his release clause of 36 million and automatically sign Manolas. Juventus and AC Milan have also reportedly considered signing the Naxos-born defender.
Tuttomercatoweb reported that Manolas will earn 3.5 million per-year with Napoli plus added bonuses.
In the 2018/2019 season, Manolas made 35 appearances for Roma across all competitions, scoring two goals and dishing out one assist. Transfermarkt rates his value at 45 million.