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All aboard the Maksimovic express: Kalidou Koulibaly agrees Napoli extension; isn't going to Chelsea — report


Francesco Pecoraro/Getty Images

Thirty thousand followers and a blue tick mark can't be wrong, right?  (Don't answer that; it's a rhetorical question, also known as a Tancredi Palmeri.)

I'm not saying Bilel Ghazi is just another Tancredi, but that's because I really don't know where to place Bilel Ghazi on the spectrum of reliable-to-unreliable.  All I know is that he's a journalist at L'Equipe.  So here he is with some sobering news on Kalidou Koulibaly, who plays nowhere near France but does speak French.

Which roughly translates to: Koulibaly not going to Premier League; set to extend with Napoli in the coming days for two extra years, until 2021.  And that's after Koulibaly played the full 90 of Napoli's opening match of the new Serie A season on Sunday.

News of Koulibaly agreeing terms on an extension shouldn't be too shocking given Napoli's repeated refusals to do business at just about any price point.  The 25-year-old's demands of a new contract is what set this whole saga off in the first place, and while De Laurentiis tried to play hardball, once Napoli lost Higuain to Juventus, they were always going to be able to give in and agree on a deserve pay-rise for the outstanding center back.

So, all aboard the Maksimovic express then?

"Torino have always been consistent and allowed players to leave when they requested it, such as Kamil Glik and Bruno Peres. Maksimovic wanted to be sold, but with Miha's arrival, the situation changed. We had promised the Coach not to sell him and in turn promised the player a raise."

"Unfortunately, someone gave him bad advice. Maksimovic is not a bad lad, but his choice was not an intelligent one. We have taken action, we will evaluate."

"We've been talking to Napoli about Maksimovic since January, so there's been too much talk and not enough action. Now he is wanted by a big foreign club too, but at the same time we won't rule out him staying too.

"The transfer market isn't closed yet. It's not just Napoli who want Maksimovic, but also a big club from [the Premier League]."

Gianluca Petrachi, Torino director; source: Mediaset via Football Italia

CHOO-CHOO-KA-CHOO, Nikola Maksimovic!

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