Napoli director: Signing Mascherano would be complicated

Javier Mascherano Argentina

Napoli director Riccardo Bigon has admitted that it might be difficult to prise Javier Mascherano away from Barcelona this summer.

Napoli and Liverpool have both been linked with Argentine international Javier Mascherano, but he may be staying at Barcelona.

Mascherano was a combative defensive midfielder for Liverpool, but he has become a solid central defender at Barcelona.

However, that transition was made somewhat under protest and it has been suggested that Mascherano is ready to quit the club in order to become a midfielder again.

Napoli boss Rafa Benitez has been trying to reunite with Mascherano for some time but it has been suggested that the 29-year-old would favour a return to Liverpool.

But while it had been assumed that Barcelona would be willing to let Mascherano leave, it now seems the Catalan side may bid to keep him and new boss Luis Enrique looks set to make him captain.

"We will sign a midfielder of substance," Napoli transfer guru Riccardo Bigon told the Corriere dello Sport.

"We like Maxime Gonalons and really like Mascherano. However I read Luis Enrique's comments about Mascherano and that discussion has therefore become complicated.

"I can guarantee that Napoli will be ambitious and competitive and stronger than the squad that just finished third in Serie A."

It may be that Napoli and Liverpool both have to give up on Mascherano and find alternative targets this summer.

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