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Napoli offer new extension to try to keep Gonzalo Higuain

Napoli's latest offer to the Argentine striker will likely only keep him in Naples for one more year, but that's better than nothing.

Maurizio Lagana/Getty Images

The hot topic in transfer talk right now is Gonzalo Higuain. Is he going to Juventus? Is he going to Arsenal, because that really seems to be a thing now? Is he going somewhere else? Could he somehow, some way stay at Napoli?

Napoli are certainly trying to retain the Serie A record scorer, and to that end have offered him another new contract, this one larger than the deal he's reportedly agreed with Juventus. In addition, Napoli would halve his release clause to €47 million starting next summer, essentially allowing them to retain him for one more season, then allowing Higuain to leave much easier a year from now.

It's not a completely ideal solution, but it will give Napoli the ability to keep Higuain for one more crucial season and make better plans about how they can replace him rather than having to make a desperate scramble this summer. Plus he probably only has one or two more truly elite-level seasons left in him at this stage of his career, so keeping him in Napoli for another year is a benefit on that front as well.

If Higuain rejects that contract, Napoli will reportedly turn to Arsenal's interest and try to work out a deal to keep him away from Juventus. They'd apparently be willing to take a deal less than Higuain's €94 million release clause plus a likely player exchange -- Olivier Giroud has been the common rumor on that front -- just to keep Juventus from landing him. Such a solution also wouldn't be ideal -- and it's still vulnerable to Juventus just triggering the release clause -- but if it keeps Higuain from Juventus, then it's better than the alternative.

Meanwhile, Napoli are claiming that while yes, Higuain has publicly declared that he has no intention of signing an extension, that he's also never said he wants to leave! Because saying that he doesn't want to stay totally means that he's going to stay! Yay! And they also said Juventus haven't made an offer yet, and no they totally haven't but only because they're not meeting Napoli reps to talk about deals involving Higuain and/or Pereyra until Monday don't pay attention do that. Oh god why are they doing this. It's a blatant attempt to drum up positive feelings in the fanbase, and it's totally not going to work because we aren't stupid.

It's starting to feel like no matter how this mess ends, it's going to feel awful.