Barcelona star tempted by Napoli interest

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Football News

Javier Mascherano could be on his way out of Barcelona when the transfer window reopens in January, as he looks towards a reunion with Rafa Benitez at Napoli, according to Italian publication, Il Mattino.

The Argentina international was heavily linked with a move away from Camp Nou during the summer, with the Serie 'A' side reportedly keen to do a deal for the utility man.

Negotiations between Barcelona and Napoli reached an impasse, meaning Mascherano was forced to stay in Spain, though the South American stopper is still keen on a switch to Stadio San Paolo.

"The story is not over yet for Mascherano," a source close to the player told Il Mattino. "The player may have decided to stay with Barcelona at the moment, but he is yet to understand his role with the Blaugrana.

"He is tempted by a move to Napoli, where he would reunite with his mentor Rafa Benitez. Barcelona, though, will not be letting go of the player for less than €22million."

The sale of Edinson Cavani to Paris Saint-Germain provided new manager Benitez with significant funds to invest in his first-team squad, and paid big-money to sign Gonzalo Higuain from Barcelona's rivals Real Madrid.

And, despite a busy summer of acquisitions, the Napoli boss could renew interest in Mascerano at the turn of the year.

"Come January, Mascherano's move to Napoli could be a possibility," concluded the source.

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