Transfer news

PSG Cavani signing 'ethically wrong'

July 16, 2013
By Ben Gladwell, Italy Correspondent

Napoli president Aurelio de Laurentiis has said he would not have sold star striker Edinson Cavani "even for €70 million" had there not been a release clause in his contract.

Aurelio De Laurentiis
GettyImagesDe Laurentiis said the funds would be reinvested in a new striker.

As Paris Saint-Germain prepared to announce the arrival of the Uruguay international for a Ligue 1 record fee on Tuesday, film producer De Laurentiis said the €63 million release clause meant he had had to sanction the move.

"If it wasn't for that clause, I wouldn't have sold him, not even for €70 million," he said. "It's a question of principle. You can’t just go around buying everything - it's ethically wrong. The problem is these clubs are sponsored by companies who flaunt absurd sums of money.

"As for Cavani, we've had to raise his salary each year, reaching a level higher than that which Bayern Munich’s top players earn.

"Then he starts saying he wants to leave, and I told him to insert a release clause, which happened last July. I'm sure Real Madrid, Manchester City and Chelsea would never have spent €63 million."

De Laurentiis said his club would reinvest the money in another striker, with Internacional's Leandro Damiao currently topping the list.

"[Director of sport Riccardo] Bigon has been talking to me about him for a year,” De he added. "I met with his entourage, and our scouts speak highly of him too."

But he said the chances of Arsenal target Gonzalo Higuain filling Cavani's boots were not high, adding: "It's hard to see a player coming from Madrid settling into a city like Naples - there would be too many problems.

"But the fans can rest assured that, regardless of the Cavani money, I had budgeted to spend €63 million this year."