Napoli look all set to sell Spain midfielder Fabian Ruiz as new boss Luciano Spalletti stamps his mark on the Partenopei.
According to La Gazzetta dello Sport, via Football Italia, Napoli are willing to offload one of Ruiz and Kalidou Koulibaly this summer. And the indications are that Koulibaly could remain at Napoli for at least one more season.
Former Roma boss Spalletti wants the Senegal centre-back to stay at the club. Napoli have also yet to receive an offer for the 29-year-old, leaving the way clear for the club to accept offers for Ruiz.
Koulibaly’s contract expires in June 2023. President Aurelio De Laurentiis is thought to be preparing to ask the defender to take a pay cut, agreeing to get spread his €6m-a-year wages on a longer deal.
As for Ruiz, he is also on contract until 2023. De Laurentiis though may well cash in on the Spain star this summer. Ruiz is part of Spain’s Euro 2020 squad and he will have the platform to showcase his talents this month.
Real Madrid and Barcelona were also fans of the central midfielder, while Manchester rivals United and City were also named in the hunt.
A transfer never really got off the ground though and Ruiz was supposed to be signing a new deal.
However, Ruiz’s agent, Alvaro Torres, revealed in April 2020 that contract talks had stalled due to a mutual decision.
“A few months ago, we decided to leave the issue of Fabian’s contract to one side. We can return to it at the end of the season,” he is quoted as saying by the Metro.
Ruiz renewal off the table
Renewal talks have not been on the agenda since. And with Liverpool eyeing a replacement for Gini Wijnaldum, Ruiz could fit the bill.
Ruiz has developed into a full international in Naples and Atletico Madrid had been tipped to make a move the former Real Betis star.
According to Todofichajes, former Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti wanted Ruiz. In fact, last year a report claimed he had already made contact with the player.
Now with Ancelotti at Real Madrid he may well pursue Ruiz again. Liverpool though are sure to be watching proceedings
Gazzetta dello Sport reported last April that Ruiz’s price tag had dropped to around £52m. Later reports claimed De Laurentiis wanted at least €80m, but those figures were pre-Covid and the economic downturn.