Hamsik won't leave Napoli

Napoli star Marek Hamsik has made it clear that he is fully committed to the Serie A outfit and won't consider leaving any time soon.

The 30-year-old midfielder has been at the Partenopei since 2007, when he signed from fellow Italian side Brescia, and reached legend status at the club after beating Diego Maradona's all-time goalscoring record for Napoli.

"I’ve got no doubts about my future, I’m a Napoli player and I’m not going to leave. Now I’m concentrating on finally bringing the Scudetto to Naples, that’s my main objective," Hamsik told Slovakian media outlet Pravda

"We’re at the top, then there’s Juventus and the other teams are nine points or more behind us. Juventus are without doubt our toughest opponent, but I don’t even want to talk about other teams." 

Hamsik was speaking to Pravda after being named Slovakia's best player of their first 25 years of existence, following their separation from the Czech Republic in 1993.

On the award, he added: "It is a great honor to get this award. I know that the fans could have chosen from a list of really important players, both current and historical players. You play football for the fans and if they appreciate you then that's the highest honor for a footballer."

Chelsea chasing Emerson... and maybe Dzeko too

Chelsea are in talks with Roma to sign left-back Emerson Palmieri, and are reportedly also eager to bring in striker Edin Dzeko.

Emerson, a Brazil-born full-back hoping to play for Italy, would provide back-up and competition for Marcos Alonso, who has been one of Chelsea’s top players at wing-back this season.

"There’s nothing certain yet, we are in a phase of discussion and evaluation," Emerson’s agent, Fernando Garcia of Elenko Sports, told Calciomercato.

"Chelsea are a concrete possibility, absolutely. Now the two clubs are talking, we’ll see if they reach a positive conclusion.

"Obviously, Emerson would love to play in the Premier League and it’d be a dream to work with Conte, as he is among the best coaches in the world."

Dzeko, who spent five seasons in England with Manchester City, scored 29 goals from 37 Serie A appearances last season and has nine from 19 so far this campaign.

The Blues are searching for a striker as Alvaro Morata’s goals have dried up and manager Antonio Conte seems not to trust Michy Batshuayi to deputise.

Juventus doing everything possible to sign Can

Juventus are ready to do everything they can to sign Liverpool’s Emre Can to a pre-contract agreement this month.

Can’s deal expires at Liverpool in the summer and he is now free to pen a deal with clubs in the rest of Europe.

Liverpool remain hopeful that they can keep hold of the 24-year-old, but Juventus have been tracking the German international for several months.  

Can is yet to make a decision on his future, but Juventus general director, Giuseppe Marotta, has confirmed that the club have put all their might behind their bid to land the midfielder.

“Emre Can is a player whose contract is running down, so it allows us to approach him for negotiations and that is the course we have taken,” Marotta told Sky Sport Italia.

“I can't say if he could sign a new contract with Liverpool, but I can say we will try all we can to get the player.

“Obviously, we have to respect what the player wants.”

 

Marotta confirms Juve are chasing Can

Juventus director Giuseppe Marotta admits that the club are looking to sign Emre Can when his contract with Liverpool expires at the end of the season.

The German midfielder has made 18 appearances for the Reds this season, but is free to talk to other clubs and has long been linked with the Italian giants.

"Emre Can is a player whose contract is running down, so it allows us to approach him for negotiations and that is the course we have taken," Marotta told Sky Sport Italia.

"I can't say if he could sign a new contract with Liverpool, but I can say we will try all we can to get the player. Obviously, we have to respect what the player wants."

Liverpool will face Swansea City in a Premier League clash at the Liberty Stadium on Monday.

Materazzi backs Lopez to help Inter

Inter Milan legend Marco Materazzi believes the club's latest loan signing Lisandro Lopez has the ability to make a real difference for the Serie A side.

The Nerazzurri brought the centre-back in on loan from Portuguese outfit Benfica until the end of the season, with the option to make the move permanent.

Materazzi is delighted with the addition, especially due to the 28-year-old's experience. The former Getafe defender has played in 224 professional games, including 26 appearances in La Liga, where he scored three goals.

"We are talking about a player with experience, he is a player already made and not a young talent coming out from favelas," Materazzi said, according to Goal.

"He played for Benfica, winning titles. He played several seasons in Champions and Europa League. 

"It means he is a well-known player and with his experience can help a lot the team to achieve those targets and Inter fans are expecting."

Suso rules out Milan exit

Milan playmaker Suso insists reports linking him with a return to former club Liverpool is an utter fabrication and disrespectful to the Italian giants.

Since leaving the Reds for the Rossoneri in 2015, the Spaniard has progressed rapidly to become an integral part of their attack.

However, with the Merseysiders seeking a replacement for Philippe Coutinho, who joined Barcelona last week, rumours have surfaced that manager Jurgen Klopp is ready to activate Suso's £72 million release clause.

But the 24-year-old says it's all just paper talk and a return to Anfield is not on the cards, as he owes the Serie A outfit for his development.

"I recently signed an important renewal," Suso wrote on his Instagram account. 'I think about the pitch and my agent thinks about the transfer market.

"I've read everything: rumours, desires, supposed negotiations and inaccuracies. Let me try to clarify.

"Firstly: I don't care about the release clause, on the pitch counts and in these five months we have to be protagonists. Secondly: a historic and special club like Milan deserves respect, they've focused on me and invested a lot.

"Thirdly: in any case, my desire would count, and only my desire. For now, I only want to stay here, everything else is just chatter."

Suso has scored seven goals and registered nine assists in 27 games for Gennaro Gattuso's side this season.

Can: No agreement with Juventus

Liverpool midfielder Emre Can insists there is no deal agreed with Serie A champions Juventus, while contract negotiations with the Reds are still ongoing.

Sky Italia recently reported that the Bianconeri reached an agreement with the Germany international which would see him sign as a free agent at the end of the season when his Liverpool contract expires.

However, Can has stated that he hasn't signed a pre-contract with another club and that he is still in talks with Liverpool, who are hoping to tie him down to a new deal.

"My agent is looking after everything but I am here until the summer. I haven't signed anything (with Juventus) or anyone," said Can, according to Sky Sports.

"I am talking with everyone, of course, I am talking with Liverpool. Why not? I still have a contract here. It is an amazing club. What can I say? My agent does the rest.

"I just concentrate on my performance and the football. I will give everything for this team."

Hamsik believes Napoli deserve Serie A title

Napoli attacking midfielder Marek Hamsik believes the Serie A side deserve to win the Scudetto in 2017/18 as they are playing the most attractive football in Italy. 

Partenopei currently lead the league by one point ahead of defending champions Juventus with the Italian top flight set to resume this coming weekend.

Hamsik has played an influential role in Napoli's recent run which has seen seven wins recorded, two draws and just one loss. The 30-year-old also has four goals and two assists to his name in all competitions.

In December last year the Slovakia star surpassed Diego Maradona's goalscoring record when he struck home his 116th strike in a 3-2 victory over Sampdoria.

Nonetheless, the forward takes the view that the Scudetto deserves to reside in Naples. Speaking to Corriere dello Sport, he said, "My dream? It’s named the Scudetto.

“It’s not only my dream but also that of the fans, Aurelio De Laurentiis (Napoli chairman), my teammates…I also think it’s the wish of those who love football because we play wonderfully-beautiful football, so I think we deserve to win it.”

Pjaca pleased with Schalke switch

New Schalke forward Marko Pjaca feels he's made the right choice to join the Bundesliga outfit for the rest of the season.

Pjaca, 22, arrived at the Champions League-chasing outfit last week on a six-month loan from Juventus, after struggling to break into Max Allegri's starting XI.

At 1.86m tall, the former Dinamo Zagreb man offers a physical threat as well as a creative outlet as in inside-forward from the left channel or as a direct pacey winger on the right.

While head coach Dominic Tedesco saw the Croatia international winger as the ideal signing to bolster his attacking options, Pjaca opted for the move to Die Knappen in order to earn his place in the national team for the 2018 World Cup this year.

And now after scoring on his first appearance for the club in a friendly against KRC Genk, Pjaca revealed his settling in well amongst his new teammates.

"The lads took me under their wing immediately, you can't take that for granted. I felt like part of the team immediately," he told the club's website. "The atmosphere is exceptional, I felt that from the first day in the training camp.

"The team have been performing very well of late. My goal is to contribute to a successful second half of the season.

"The conversations with Domenico Tedesco were crucial to me deciding to join Schalke. He explained his plans and convinced me. I want to pay back his faith!"