Have Napoli already secured another defender?

Valerio Pennicino

According to reports in the Italian media, Napoli upped their bid for Luca Antonelli and Genoa have agreed to the January switch.

It's not even January first yet and we've already got rumors (well, we always have rumors) and bids and contracts practically signed. For Napoli, the haste to sign new players is pretty understandable, considering the brokenness of Camilio Zúñiga and Giandomenico Mesto, the fact that Christian Maggio already spent a spell on the sidelines after surgery, Miguel Britos still not being back from injury, and Pablo Armero being defective.

And so it comes as no surprise that the Napoli calciomercato is heating up with rumors about defenders being signed. Yesterday, the Italian media clued us in that a bid had already been placed for Genoa full back Luca Antonelli. However, that bid, of about €4.8m, just made Enrico Preziosi laugh and laugh. He may have also said something along the lines of "Come back when you're done screwing around, Aurelio."

But today's reports suggest everything is finished except for the signature on the dotted line. Napoli returned to Genoa, hat in hand, apologizing profusely and offering up €8m for the 26 year old. Genoa wanted €10m, but agreed to the lower bid as long as they have the right to buy out the loans of Alessandro Gamberini and Emanuele Calaiò. That's some, um, creative bargaining, Genoa.

So it seems Antonelli is on his way to Napoli come January. Personally, I'd rather have Danilo D'Ambrosio of Torino, whose contract is also set to run out, and has more versatility than Antonelli. But alas, Napoli have yet to hire me as a transfer market advisor. Or anything else.

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