Chelsea’s new signing Kalidou Koulibaly was not happy with Napoli’s President following his comments that he will not sign an African player until they decide to forfeit the African Cup of Nations (AFCON).
Aurelio De Laurentiis in an interview with the Wall Street Italia said: “I told them, lads, don’t talk to me about Africans anymore.
“‘I love them, but either they sign something confirming they’ll back out of playing the Africa Cup of Nations, or otherwise between that tournament, the World Cup qualifiers in South America, these players are never available!
“We are the idiots who pay salaries only to send them all over the world playing for others.”
The Senegalese international reacting to his comments urged the Napoli President to show respect toward African Players.
What did Kalidou Koulibaly say on Aurelio De Laurentiis comments?
Speaking at a press conference, the former Napoli players said when asked about Aurelio De Laurentiis’s controversial comments that he will not sign an African player again: “It’s up to him.
“For me, the most important thing is to respect everybody. I always respect everybody.
“When I played there I was playing also for Senegal, and I won the AFCON. It was indeed a difficult moment for them when we went to the AFCON, but I’m really happy today (to have won).
“We have to respect the national team also. You cannot speak about an African national team like this, I think. You have to have respect as you have for the other national teams.
“As captain of Senegal, I think it’s not a good way to speak about the national team, but I respect what he thinks. If he thinks the team can play without African players, it’s up to him.
“But I think not everyone in the club has the same idea as him. I know everybody over there, I know the supporters and the supporters don’t think like this.
“It’s up to him, but it’s not an idea of the society of the city, because the city is really respectful. This is what he thinks, not what the city is thinking or the society is thinking.”
Kalidou Koulibaly added when asked if anyone at Napoli approached him to discuss with him not playing for Senegal in the AFCON: “No, never. Nobody ever told me not to go to AFCON. Maybe sometimes they tried to ask my agent, but with me as captain of Senegal, even as a player of Senegal, when AFCON comes I want to be the first one there.
“In December I was injured, so I came to Senegal early to start my training with the team. I was really happy and excited to start the AFCON.
“Nobody can tell me not to go to my national team. I have a lot of love for my national team, my country, for the people I play for. If somebody tells me not to go there, it’s the only time I will fight with somebody.
“We are all respectful. We waited for everyone to come from the Premier League a bit late, but when everybody came everybody was happy to be there. I think in Africa we all think like this. We have respect for everybody, but if someone tells them to not come they will all fight to come.
“It’s the most important thing, and everybody has to give us respect like we give respect to everybody.”