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Soccer

Napoli coach Spalletti would love to work with Cristiano Ronaldo

The Napoli coach accepts it will be difficult to bring in the Manchester United striker, but said he was hopeful the deal could be done.

ItaliaUpdate:
The Napoli coach accepts it will be difficult to bring in the Manchester United striker, but said he was hopeful the deal could be done.
VINCE MIGNOTTEFE

Contacts between Italian soccer club Napoli and player agent Jorge Mendes over Cristiano Ronaldo continue to cause a stir in Italy.

Despite Mendes’ comments saying there would be no exchange: “Victor wants to play the Champions League in Naples”, several sources insist on the possibility of seeing striker Victor Osimhen at Manchester United in exchange for 100 million euros (about the same in dollars) and CR7 playing in the shadow of Vesuvius.

Spalletti full of praise for Cristiano Ronaldo

The outstanding performances of Nigerian player Osimhen, who has started this year with two goals in two games, might have led some to believe that Spalletti wouldn’t be so happy with that option. The coach, however, made it very clear at a press conference that you can’t say no to Cristiano: “Adding a Cristiano shirt to my collection? Anyone would. I’d love to know which coach wouldn’t want to work with him, it’s something to talk about forever. We are talking about a player who won several Champions Leagues, who scored more goals than anyone else, who can be in any area of the pitch and who solves problems on his own. Whatever happens, it’s no problem for me.”

Ronaldo playing for Man Utd against Southampton on Saturday. Will he leave?
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Ronaldo playing for Man Utd against Southampton on Saturday. Will he leave?Ash DonelonGetty

The coach, after praising the Portuguese player, confessed that he sees it very difficult for the operation to come to fruition: “De Laurentiis told me that he hasn’t received any offers yet and I see it as unlikely that something like this could happen in a few days. Then you have to ask the sports director...”.

Tomorrow the Azzurri, after two spectacular victories against Verona and Monza, visit Fiorentina, a more complicated game. Spalletti doesn’t believe that Osimhen will be distracted by market rumours, and continues to back him: “Victor is a great footballer and for those like him, the market is always open. A big club owner can wake up any day and decide to sign him. He is a top player and he should be the protagonist”. The soap opera, with five days to go before the end of the market, continues...

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