‘Napoli want Pepe!’ – Ancelotti confirms agent talks


first_imgNapoli boss Carlo Ancelotti has confirmed that the Serie A side have held talks with Lille winger Nicolas Pepe, adding that their interest in the Ivory Coast international is no secret.In addition, the Italian coach has added that the Serie A outfit remain keen on Real Madrid forward James Rodriguez as the Colombian continues to look for a new home following the conclusion of his loan with Bayern Munich.Pepe has been on the radar of several of Europe’s biggest clubs during the off-season, but Napoli look poised to beat their rivals to his signature after the player’s agents visited the club’s training camp on Thursday. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? The 24-year-old enjoyed a prolific season in Ligue 1, scoring 23 goals in 41 appearances across all competitions, and being named in both the division’s Team of the Year and picking up the coveted Prix Marc-Vivien Foe, awarded to the best African footballer in France.Speaking to reporters, Ancelotti, who is about to enter his second year at the helm of Napoli, made no secret of his desire to see the winger cross the Alps into Italy to join his side when asked about the presence of Pepe’s agents around the club’s accommodation .“They were in our hotel,” he admitted to the press. “I said hello, as I did with all the agents who came here.”Obviously, we are interested in Pepe, his agents are here and there’s no point hiding that. Negotiations are in progress and we’ll see what happens.“Pepe is a wide attacking player. We want to find someone who can play between the lines, but also strong with his feet.”On James and whether a deal for Pepe would dampen interest in the Madrid man, he added: “All negotiations are still open.”Real Madrid want to sell and Napoli want to sign him. There is no optimism or pessimism. There are players who interest us and we’ll see what happens.”Ancelotti also played down suggestions that Arkadiusz Milik would be shown the door if Inter’s Mauro Icardi was to arrive, with Real Betis having been linked with interest in his availability.“None of our players are currently on the market,” he added. “All the players are here because we intend to keep them.”Of course, if someone wants to try a new experience, we’re here to listen.”last_img read more