In the most recent twist of transfer rumors, Bayern Munich’s Artutro Vidal has been linked with a potential move to Italy to join SSC Napoli this summer. The Chilean midfielder is said to be a top transfer target of former Bayern manager Carlo Ancelotti, who, per a report by The Guardian, has a agreed a two-year deal to replace Napoli boss Maurizio Sarri. Sarri is stepping down as Napoli boss after just falling short of the Serie A title to Juventus in his third season in charge of the club.
UPDATE: Ancelotti has been confirmed to succeed Sarri at Napoli on a three-year deal:
From Chilean journalist Maks Cárdenas:
ANCELOTTI wants to sign @kingarturo23 . He already tried to sign him at Real Madrid, when he asked form"the best midfielder in the world" but Florentino signed Kroos. Vidal told me in an interview: "Ancelotti is the best coach in the world. the numbers don't lie"— Maks Cárdenas (@MaksCardenas) May 23, 2018
Per a report by CalcioMercato, Vidal is pegged to be the go-to replacement for midfielder Marek Hamsik, who looks set to leave Napoli this summer. With the [presumed] opening in Napoli’s midfield, combined with the incoming Leon Goretzka to Bayern’s midfield this summer, Vidal could be persuaded to make the switch to guarantee first team status and consistent minutes. The Chilean had quickly become one of Jupp Heynckes’ first names on the team sheet when he was fully fit this season, but with new manager Niko Kovac coming in this summer, he could see things a bit differently, especially as Vidal recovers from his knee injury.
Breaking the bank for Vidal?
According to SportBild, Bayern have valuated Vidal at around €50m, as other clubs besides Napoli have also expressed interest in acquiring the Chileans services this summer. Earlier this season, Chelsea had been pegged as the favorites to make a move for the midfielder, but that looks to be increasingly less likely due to their failure to qualify for the Champions League next season. Now, Manchester United are the club in England that would be most likely to make a move for the midfielder.
As it stands, Vidal’s contract with Bayern is set to expire in June of 2019, but accepting a fee close to €50m could prove to be a wise decision for Bayern, especially if Vidal has his reservations about losing out on playing time to Goretzka.