Gonzalo Higuain’s agent, Nicolas Higuain, has told a radio station that his brother will sign a new deal with Napoli, prompting speculation that he could leave the Italian club this summer, with Arsenal, predictably, linked.
The 28-year-old still has two years left on the deal he signed with Napoli when he was meant to be coming to Arsenal so if they wish to get some their money back they could look to sell him this summer.
But, Nicolas says that Napioli will only sell if the Argentine’s release clause, said to be a ridiculous £74m, is met.
“This is the situation,” Nicolas Higuain told radio show Closs Continental.
“The president is asking for the clause to be paid to let go of Gonzalo, and we have the right to refuse to renew.
“We arrived at Napoli with the promise of a successful project, playing in the Champions League and winning the Scudetto, with improved facilities and a desire to grow. It wasn’t right of the club to ignore those commitments.
“Aurelio De Laurentiis has every right to demand the clause in his contract be paid, but my brother and I have decided not to accept a renewal.
“We’ll see what happens next year with Napoli, given that his contract expires in 2018 when he turns 30.
“For now we’ll continue to abide by the contract, after that I don’t know what will happen, whether a club will be able to buy him or not.
“We have a contract with Napoli and, as a great professional, Gonzalo will continue to respect it. He’ll train correctly and give his all.
“But it absolutely won’t be renewed if things stay this way.”
It was reported in May that Higuain would sign a new deal in an attempt to lower this release clause to around £46m but he hasn’t signed anything in Italy since he arrived there in 2013.
Given the lack of high-quality replacements out there, a striker in the hand is definitely worth two in the transfer market these days and Napoli are likely to stick to their guns over his price tag.
Throw in his age and the fact that his next contract is likely to be his last big deal in a top European League, it will be a brave and cash-foolish club who will activate his release clause this summer.
Arsenal are unlikely to be that club but with Chelsea interested and a new manager at the helm eager to put his stamp on his side, we could well see him rock up in West London.
Imagine how that would go down with Arsenal fans!
Higuain scored 36 Serie A goals in 35 games last season.