Just days after Riccardo Bigon officially resigned as the sporting director of Napoli, club president Aurelio De Laurentiis is apparently set to name his replacement: current Carpi sporting director Cristiano Giuntoli.
You're probably wondering what a Carpi is right now and who the heck Giuntoli is, and that's fair. A few years ago, Carpi were a fairly insignificant side in Italy, bouncing around the lower divisions with a tiny stadium and no real budget to do more. Then Giuntoli showed up, saw what he had to work with, and made a few smart hiring and transfer decisions that catapulted them up the ranks, showing up in Serie B two years ago and winning Italy's second division outright this past season to earn their first ever place in Serie A.
Carpi still had a shoestring budget and a tiny stadium the whole time, but Giuntoli worked some absolute magic to get them this far. With Napoli something of a big-club equivalent of Carpi on the European scale, this seems like a decent experiment to try out. If Giuntoli can bring similar successes with a larger budget -- but still small compared to what some of his peers in England or Spain or Germany are working with -- then Napoli could do great things.
An official announcement is still forthcoming, like with new manager Maurizio Sarri, but this looks like a deal that's all but wrapped up at this point. Hopefully Giuntoli does great things in Naples. Bigon left him some awfully big shoes to fill.