Arsenal and Liverpool target ready to talk to Napoli

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Arsenal and Liverpool have suffered a setback in their alleged pursuit of Ashley Williams after the Swansea captain's agent revealed a willingness to speak to Napoli over a prospective transfer.

According to the South Wales Evening Post, the 29-year-old defender would consider a summer switch to Stadio San Paolo, providing the Serie 'A' outfit firm up their reported interest.

The news will come as a blow to Gunners boss Arsene Wenger, who is believed to have been considering a bid to bring the Wales international to the Emirates Stadium this close season.

Brendan Rodgers has also been mooted as an admirer of the Swans centre-back, having worked closely with him during his time in charge at the Liberty Stadium.

The Liverpool manager was linked by the London Metro with a bid for the £5million-rated stopper, but the Anfield club could also miss out on Williams if Napoli make contact with the player.

"There has been talk of meetings with the club or with Rafa Benitez, but there's no truth in that at the moment," said Peter Smith, an employee of the company that represents the Swansea skipper.

"Clearly we are talking about a great club with an international level manager, so we are ready to talk to Napoli if a call were to come. However, until the possibility becomes concrete, there's no point talking about it."

With just one year remaining on his current contract in South Wales, Garry Monk has urged his influential captain to pen new terms, but it looks as though Williams's long-term future lies away from Swansea.

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Ashley Williams
Premier League

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