Napoli owner Aurelio De Laurentiis has confirmed that he is looking to sign Sokratis from Arsenal.
The Serie A side had been in for Gabriel Magalhães only for the Brazilian to choose the Gunners instead. With Kalidou Koulibaly looking likely to move to Manchester City, Napoli boss Gennaro Gattuso needs reinforcements for his backline and likes the cut of our Greek’s jib.
“We are working on signing Sokratis Papastathopoulos from Arsenal, we consider it an option,” De Laurentiis told reporters, according to IlNapoliOnline.com.
Having played with Sokratis at AC Milan, Gattuso knows what the centre-back will bring; experience and professionalism at a low cost. A fee of around £3.5 million has been mooted, way down on the £15 million Arsenal paid Borussia Dortmund for the player’s services two years ago.
Sokratis would be forgiven for running down his contract at Arsenal and leaving on a free next year but he clearly wants to play and knows that game time is unlikely to be forthcoming in N5 having watched us sign four other centre-backs in the last three transfer windows.