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Napoli closing on signing Adam Ounas for €10 million

The Bordeaux winger seems to be headed to Naples, and it could be a lot of fun.

Napoli seem to be about to make their first signing of the summer, having reportedly come to terms with Bordeaux on the signing of winger Adam Ounas, with the Algerian attacker believed to be set to arrive in Naples for a medical on Friday.

The transfer has developed very quickly, with rumors of interest starting over the weekend, then an Instagram account purported to be from Ounas himself seeming to announce the transfer on Monday.

There was doubt as to the authenticity of the account at first — the account is only a few days old and has just a few posts — but further digging into Ounas’ social media past lends credence to it. Apparently several years ago, a much younger Ounas made a series of inflammatory and controversial tweets, and Bordeaux banned him from further social media use and made him delete all of his accounts. His significant other also commented positively to the post, lending further validity to the origin of the post.

The move was further confirmed on Tuesday, with Bordeaux manager Jocelyn Gourvennec saying that Ounas will leave as the club “can’t compete” with a standing transfer offer that the youngster found too tempting to ignore. Ounas’ agent, Henri Zambelli, also said on Tuesday that the player has agreed to terms with Napoli and that the clubs were working on finalizing details of the transfer.

As to who Ounas is as a player, the 20 year old is still very much a raw player, but looks like he could be a diamond in the rough. He’s very quick and likes to have the ball at his feet, and while he’s still prone to the odd youthful mistake, he’s also very willing to fight his way through challenges to get closer to goal. Ounas also has a knack for audacious shots, not unlike Dries Mertens and Lorenzo Insigne.

Unfortunately, Ounas can also be a little bull-headed, getting over-focused on getting to goal himself at the cost of his teammates, and because of his love for the flashy shot, his finishing can be hot and cold since he goes for lower-percentage chances. Those are things that should improve with age and maturity, though, and given the overall quality of his skillset there’s a lot of reason to think that once he matures, Ounas could be a very, very good player.

Ounas has typically played on the left wing early in his career, being a left-footed winger, but he’s also played enough on the right and performed well enough there to see him doing well as a backup for Jose Callejon. He’s also done very well as an impact substitute off the bench, something Napoli could very much use in the final third.

€10 million looks like a hefty price to pay for a relatively inexperienced player who’s such a wildcard in where his development can go, but in this transfer market that’s not a bad price to pay at all for a player with the upside Ounas appears to have. He’s a fun player with the raw ability to become a very good one, and that’s not a bad thing to see Napoli signing in any way.