Italian outfit Napoli have squashed many dreams, by tying hot transfer prospect Dries Mertens down to the club till 2020.
The experienced Belgian international has been in impeccable form this season, standing as one of the most productive players in Europe in the recently concluded campaign. Even at 30, he was one of the best players in Serie A and the Champions League, scoring 33 goals and picking up 15 assists in all competitions for Napoli.
Irrespective of his age, his form has seen him attract interest from quite a few clubs, with English side Tottenham Hotspur desperate for his signature. But all the interested parties will now have to forget about his signature, as Napoli have convinced him to stay in Naples for the long term.
The Italian club has now officially announced that Mertens has signed a contract extension, and will remain at the Maurizio Sarri till 2020.
— Official SSC Napoli (@sscnapoli) May 27, 2017
In an interview on Saturday, Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis revealed that the player was happy to sign the new deal.
He said: “Last night I had a meeting with Giuntoli, Chiavelli and Mertens’ entourage. We were together from 2.30 p.m. in the afternoon to 1.40 a.m. in the morning, including our lawyer, the lawyers from Belgium, his Milanese consultants, financial experts on the phone and after hours of technical discussion, we all worked out a perfect bilateral agreement for Dries and Napoli.”
De Laurentiis further added, however, that he will not be able to keep the forward at the club if there are suitors who are ready to meet his valuation in a year’s time.
“Dries will stay with us for a few more years, unless of course he wants to go to China and next year someone pays the release clause that he wanted introduced and I cannot refuse,” he added.
Do you think this new deal is enough to keep Mertens at Napoli?
Written by Aakarsh Bommakanti
A scholar in Cricket, an amateur in Football, a fanatic of both. Striving to learn by the day and writing to get closer to his first love, Liverpool Football Club. Work also featured by the4thofficial, Soccersouls, Sportswiki, Faceoffootball, Rousing the Kop.