The agent of Napoli defender Elseid Hysaj has this evening provided an update on links between his client and Chelsea.
Hysaj, a 24-year-old right-back who can also play on the left, has been on the books of Napoli since 2015, when he made the move to the Stadio San Paolo from fellow Italian outfit Empoli for just 5 million Euro.
The Albanian international immediately managed to usurp Partenopei legend Christian Maggio as the club’s first-choice right-full, with his increasingly impressive performances over the seasons since having led to growing interest on the part of some of Europe’s biggest clubs.
Premier League links
Premier League giants Arsenal and Manchester United had, for some time, been the two sides most persistently-linked with potential moves for Hysaj, with claims emerging from Italy back in March having insisted that the stopper was set for a summer move to a European heavyweight.
Such claims originally stemmed from a Tuttosport report, which stated that Hysaj had been informed by an unnamed club that they would be activating his 50 million Euro release clause (which was valid between June 30th and July 15th), rendering Napoli helpless in their hopes of holding onto the 42-time capped international.
‘Can’t rule out resuming negotiations with Chelsea’
In the end, however, Hysaj stayed put this summer.
The stopper has since gone on to play an important role in Napoli’s impressive start to their Serie A campaign, appearing in all but one of the Partenopei’s league outings under Carlo Ancelotti.
However, the club’s Champions League campaign has proven a different story altogether.
Hysaj has managed just a solitary start in Napoli’s 5 Group stage fixtures thus far.
As such, the 24-year-old has once again been linked with a potential departure from Naples over recent weeks.
And it is another of the Premier League’s biggest clubs, in the form of Chelsea, who are now said to be leading the race for his signature, with Hysaj’s agent, Mario Giuffredi, having this evening spoken out over the links between his client and the Blues.
During an interview with Radio Crc, Giuffredi confirmed that he may well recommence talks with Chelsea this winter, with former boss Maurizio Sarri keen for a reunion at Stamford Bridge:
‘I can’t rule out resuming negotiations with Chelsea in January.’
‘We know there was contact in the summer because Sarri wanted him. And we also know that [Davide] Zappacosta is not to the liking of the Coach.’
‘We’ll see how it goes. Anything could happen.’
‘The Coach [Ancelotti] really rates the player. He hasn’t played as much in the Champions League for purely tactical reasons.’
‘Ancelotti is a great Coach because he knows how to adapt the formation or tactical approach based on the opponent.’
‘Now that there’s some rotation it’s not correct to say Hysaj has lost his place. It only seems anomalous because in recent seasons he always played.’