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Napoli forward Dries Mertens has shown his love for the city of Naples in an interview with La Repubblica newspaper.
Speculation has been growing over the Belgian international’s future at the Serie A side after it was revealed that his contract contains a €28million (£25m) buyout clause. The Gunners reportedly attempted to sign the 30-year-old attacker at the end of last season before he signed a new contract to remain at the Partenopei, but Mertens seems content to stay in Italy.
“I was nobody before I joined Naples and people have always been very nice to me. I know every corner of this amazing city, even the parts that I should not go to. Somebody snubbed this club in the past, other players don’t know what they are missing.”
Considering the forward’s most recent comments, it does raise the question at to why he would have insisted on such a low release clause in his contract. He is an integral part of Napoli’s title challenge, having followed up his 34 goal haul last season with nine goals scored already this season.
It must be said that his affection for Naples doesn’t preclude him leaving the city for a new challenge, and it could be that next summer he is subject to some offers, with Arsenal no doubt one of his potential suitors if Alexis Sanchez does depart the club.