Napoli reportedly inserted a €150m release clause in Kalidou Koulibaly’s contract which will only apply to clubs outside of Italy.
The 27-year-old has established himself as one of the top centre-halves in Europe since joining Napoli in 2014, making 192 appearances for the Partenopei and playing a vital role in their progress to being the main challenger to Juventus in Serie A.
It hasn’t resulted in trophies, but there is no denying the quality that Koulibaly possesses both in terms of his defensive class and composure on the ball to tick all the necessary boxes for a modern-day defender.
As noted by the Manchester Evening News, the Senegalese international has been linked with a move to Man Utd this summer as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer begins to now plan life at Old Trafford for the long term.
Meanwhile, Goal Italy note that Real Madrid are also keen with Zinedine Zidane similarly assessing his options in the market to bolster his squad.
However, crucially, it’s added in that report that Koulibaly has a €150m release clause in his contract which only applies to foreign clubs, and so if either of the European giants mentioned above wish to prise him away from Naples, they’ll have to dig very deep into their pockets it seems.
It could be argued that Koulibaly could be worth the investment as he should have four or five of the best years of his career coming up as he continues to mature and develop his game, and he would make an immediate impact rather than gambling on a younger player to come through and reach his level.
In turn, whether it’s to replace a key figure like Raphael Varane in Real Madrid’s case, as noted by Goal Italy, or to shore up a leaky defence which has conceded 40 goals in 30 league outings, giving Man Utd the worst defensive record of the top seven sides, Koulibaly would certainly be a viable solution.