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Mercato Madness: Aurelio De Laurentiis says Napoli doesn't need Mario Balotelli... or Ezequiel Lavezzi

Despite significant rumors linking both players to January moves to Napoli, the club's owner and president says that no such deals will be happening.

Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

Every transfer season, a bevy of ridiculous rumors that don't have a chance of panning in to anything develop. Just because they'll never happen doesn't mean that papers and websites won't keep reporting on them ad nauseam, much to the annoyance of fans everywhere. Such is the case with recently persistent rumors of Mario Balotelli and  Ezequiel Lavezzi, and Aurelio De Laurentiis has had enough.

"What would be the use of buying them?" asked De Laurentiis in an interview with Italian media. "We're fully covered in attack, and in a few months we're getting [Lorenzo] Insigne back too. Sometimes the agents of the players amuse themselves by mentioning our names, but we have nothing to do with Lavezzi nor with Balotelli."

De Laurentiis also noted Napoli's financial structure likely keeping Napoli from signing either player even if they were interested, specifically mentioning Lavezzi's astronomical salary along the way. Balotelli's isn't as high since he took a pay cut to sign with Liverpool, but is still paid far more than his likely role as a backup striker would justify.

Old grudges also seem to play a factor, as De Laurentiis seems to still be irked by Lavezzi's departure. Let's not forget that Lavezzi [...] was the one who wanted to leave Napoli in the first place. He made that decision in 2011, when we asked him to stay for another year. But in 2012 he moved to Paris Saint-Germain."

When it comes to matters like this, De Laurentiis only says what he means. Sounds like it's time to close the book on those two rumors.