Chelsea flop Tiemoue Bakayoko open to the idea of extending his spell at Napoli regardless of whether Gennaro Gattuso remains as manager, reveals his agent – with Blues keen to sell midfielder for no less than £16m
- Tiemoue Bakayoko has made 31 appearances on loan at Napoli this season
- Bakayoko’s performances have come in for strong criticism from TuttoNapoli
- They have also branded Chelsea’s £16million asking price ‘pure madness’
- However, his brother Abdoulaye thinks there is a chance his client can stay
- Gennaro Gattuso could be sacked even if Napoli make the top four in Serie A
Tiemoue Bakayoko’s agent has said the French midfielder’s future at Napoli is not tied to that of coach Gennaro Gattuso.
Chelsea loanee Bakayoko, who arrived at Stamford Bridge in the summer of 2017 from Monaco, has made 31 appearances in all competitions for the Champions League-chasing outfit this term having spent stints at AC Milan and Monaco in 2018-19 and 2019-20 respectively.
Gattuso’s contract expires in the summer and he may leave regardless of whether Napoli make the top four in Serie A and qualify for Europe’s premier club competition – they are currently fifth – but Football Italia has quoted Bakayoko’s agent and brother Abdoulaye as saying that while the former Italy midfield terrier might leave the Stadio San Paolo at the end of the season, his client has plans to stay.
Tiemoue Bakayoko’s brother Abdoulaye says his client could stay at Napoli beyond the summer
Gennaro Gattuso’s future is perilous whether or not the club make the top four in Serie A
‘His future is not tied to that of the coach,’ he said. ‘There is a strong bond with the coach, but when the discussions are held with the club to stay at Napoli, then we’ll see.
‘The focus right now is to see out the season in the best possible way. There are no appointments planned with the club to discuss it.
‘Whether he remains at Napoli or not, that will not depend on Gattuso. He is happy here; it’s a big club with a great history.’
Despite being a regular part of Napoli’s team this term, his performances have been branded ‘one of the disappointments of the season’ by TuttoNapoli, who have baulked Chelsea’s £16million asking price for Bakayoko – branding it ‘pure madness’ – and claim the club have ‘no intention’ of signing the 26-year-old on a permanent basis.
Bakayoko’s displays have been heavily criticised by TuttoNapoli despite his regular game time
Gattuso meanwhile has been feeling the heat after Napoli crashed out of the Europa League at the round of 32 to Granada last month, with Maurizio Sarri and Rafael Benitez linked with a return to the club.
Napoli are currently two points adrift of fourth-placed Atalanta in Serie A after eye-catching away wins over AC Milan and Roma and have a game in hand on Gian Piero Gasperini’s men.
They face six league games in April that will largely shape their league destiny, including clashes with Juventus, Inter Milan and bottom side Crotone.