Napoli open to Edin Dzeko exchange as Manchester City target Cavani

Man City striker Edin Dzeko. Photo: PA

Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis has played down suggestions he wants Rafael Benitez to be the club's new head coach and claimed the delegation that visited England yesterday was hoping to secure an exchange deal with Manchester City for Edinson Cavani.

Film producer De Laurentiis had been linked with outgoing interim Chelsea boss Benitez as a replacement for Napoli's own departing coach Walter Mazzarri, who guided the team to second place in Serie A.

Reports had claimed Benitez would be offered a two-year contract by Napoli, but instead, according to De Laurentiis, the president sent sporting director Riccardo Bigon to negotiate with City over a deal that could see Cavani move to the Etihad Stadium and Edin Dzeko join the Neapolitans.

De Laurentiis was quoted by Gazzetta.it as saying: "I did not go to London for Benitez. You would have me appointing 15 coaches: it's true, I've heard them all in the last six months and I'm aware.

"Yesterday I was in London with (managing director Andrea) Chiavelli and Bigon and for a simple reason: I have to prepare for the release of the film about Steve Jobs.

"However, I told Bigon, 'Go to City and take the chance to negotiate over Dzeko and see what they are willing to do for Cavani'.

"Who will be the new coach? I don't do things in a hurry. I'm trying to understand who will be the people to accompany me in the next journey."