Napoli won their first Scudetto for 33 years this season and they have beaten all 19 Serie A rivals at least once along the way.
It has been a spectacular campaign for a football-obsessed city which yearned for league title success again, but appropriately for a club that’s historically never been short of drama, it looks like manager Luciano Spalletti is set for an abrupt exit.
Spalletti has been the master tactician behind Napoli’s emphatic league triumph. He’s been able to get the best out of now-established talents like Victor Osimhen and Khvicha Kvaratskhelia and yet his time in Naples seems to be drawing to an end.
ALSO READ: Nottingham Forest keen on buying Dean Henderson
The manager’s contract at Napoli is set to expire at the end of this season and although the club have the option to extend it by a further two years, Spalletti is said to want a new deal with improved terms to reflect his achievement.
Spalletti is just the sixth-highest-paid coach in Serie A, but the biggest problem is, reports suggest he feels disrespected due to a lack of communication over his future, suggesting there is thunder coming after the sunshine in Naples.
The vultures from the Premier League are monitoring the situation and Manchester United will be ready to swoop for Osimhen. The striker has 28 goals this season and he’s on Erik ten Hag’s transfer shortlist behind priority target Harry Kane.
Although believed to be happy at Napoli, Osimhen previously admitted he would be receptive to offers from the Premier League and his willingness to swap Italy for England may increase should Spalletti leave the club.
Spalletti recently said Osimhen scoring the goal that determined the Serie A title was the ‘right reward’ for a ‘strong footballer with heart’ and the manager’s exit might unsettle star players like the Nigeran striker.
It could spark a dismantling of this successful Napoli side and the club are said to be braced for a summer of interest, just one year after losing players like Kalidou Koulibaly, Lorenzo Insigne, Dries Mertens, Fabian Ruiz and David Ospina.
Osimhen, Kvaratskhelia and Kim Min-jae have been heavily linked with exits and that’s not a surprise – they have all enjoyed excellent individual seasons.
United have an interest in Kim and Osimhen, but the latter would be the more exciting arrival. The striker has been prolific this term and he’d be able to provide goals in a side which Ten Hag acknowledges hasn’t scored enough.
Napoli will hold out for a fee in excess of £100million for Osimhen and if talks for Kane aren’t productive – with infamously difficult Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy expected to drag his heels – then an offer for the 24-year-old could happen.
There has been a debate emerging among United supporters on who they’d rather sign between Osimehn and Kane, but the truth is, they’d both be outstanding signings. The team needs a goalscorer and both can regularly find the net.
It’s understandable that Kane is the priority target, given his proven record in the Premier League, the importance of which simply can’t be understated, but Osimhen looks equipped with the right qualities to succeed on British shores.
Osimhen is a natural goalscorer, someone who has a presence in the box and can score in different ways. His goals have fired Napoli to their first Serie A title in over three decades and another Sucedtto would be possible if they kept the band together.
Unfortunately for Napoli, it looks like they’re set to lose the band’s manager and to make it worse, the frontman Osimhen.
Napoli’s supporters are prepared for an eventful summer and United might just take advantage of the mess.