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Empoli blocked Maurizio Sarri's assistant from joining Napoli

Giovanni Martusciello wanted to follow his manager to Napoli, but Empoli refused to let him out of his contract.

Gabriele Maltinti/Getty Images

One of the men that new Napoli manager Maurizio Sarri wanted to bring from Empoli to add to his staff was one Giovanni Martusciello, his chief coaching assistant at his former club, but it's looking like that won't happen after the move was blocked by Empoli's president.

Martusciello is still under contract at Empoli for the time being, under the same deal with two more years on it that Sarri walked away from at the end of the season. In order to follow Sarri to Naples, Empoli president Fabrizio Corsi would have to release Martusciello from his contract, and for now, he's elected not to do so.

For his part, the coach sounds like he's not thrilled with the situation, but is willing to deal with it for the time being.

Sarri asked me to follow him and the Empoli President said no. That is the basic situation.

I am from Ischia [a town near Naples], so clearly the idea of working at Napoli is exciting for me. I’d be coming home, to the most important club for all of us from the Campania region. Having said that, Empoli has also become a home for me, as I have a very strong bond with this club and city.

It is all very complicated. If President Fabrizio Corsi has made this decision, then I have a contract with Empoli and cannot argue with that.

-Source: Football Italia

Most likely, Corsi wants to hold on to Martusciello as long as the manager's chair at the Stadio Castellani is still vacant. Once a new manager is hired and chooses his own staff, Sarri's assistant will be free to meet up with his old boss at Napoli if he's deemed unnecessary by whoever Corsi hires to lead the team. Or, who knows, maybe Martusciello himself will get a chance at the job -- his entire coaching career has been spent at Empoli, leading the youth team to some success before serving as the assistant to Empoli's last two managers.

Either way, this is probably a frustration for Sarri, but hopefully one that can be resolved soon.