Aurelio De Laurentiis is never shy about letting others know what’s on his mind, so when Corriere dello Sport (via Football Italia) approached him with a few questions regarding the current standoff between his club and Maurizio Sarri, the Napoli owner, unlike Sarri’s agent, did not hold back.
“If anyone comes to negotiate for him, I will be very reasonable. I am not a vindictive person and, I repeat, Sarri will always have my thanks.”
Reasonable is not the first word we’d use to describe De Laurentiis, but it’s noteworthy that he’s leaving the door open for negotiations, and in perhaps the clearest way since this whole saga began. Perhaps he’s finally softening his stance? Or maybe he’s smelling potential interest from Real Madrid or Spurs (if Pochettino leave the latter for the former)? Could he finally relent a bit on the hard buyout clause price of €8m?
Or would any of that be too reasonable? After all, apparently the whole reason we’re in this situation is because De Laurentiis believes Sarri was batting his eyelashes at other teams. So not vindictive! So, so much.
“I have always been very polite to him, I have always supported him.
”But at a certain point, if you have a contract with me for another two years but you start publically expressing doubts — saying things like ‘I don’t know if I’m staying,’ ‘I don’t know whether the club will be able to keep their best players,’ ‘in life sometimes it’s best to end stories while they are good,’ — it sends clear messages of impatience and a lack of confidence.
”Maurizio never answered me [about whether he was staying]. If you close the door in my face, I will politely stay away so as to not disturb your work, but only up to a certain point. After that I have the right and the duty to protect the interests of the club and start to look elsewhere.”
-Aurelio De Laurentiis; source: CdS via Football Italia
De Laurentiis is actually the victim, you see.
Meanwhile, Sarri remains employed by Napoli, the lawyers have been called in, and the real drama may only be beginning. Or as Corriere put it on their front page ... “Aurelio, what theater!”