Angry Football Fans Blast 'Racist' Napoli President for Vowing Not to Sign African Players

Angry Football Fans Blast 'Racist' Napoli President for Vowing Not to Sign African Players

Lukman Mumuni
updated at April 12, 2023 at 8:08 PM
In this article:
CAF Africa Cup of Nations logo
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ITA Serie A
  • Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis has vowed not to sign African players unless they sign a deal not to participate at AFCON
  • The Italian club has two players from Africa, Victor Osimhen who plays for Nigeria and Cameroon's Zambo Anguissa
  • Zambo Anguissa represented the Indomitable Lions during AFCON 2021 but Osimhen missed due to injury

President of Italian club, Napoli, Aurelio De Laurentiis has been described as racist following his decision not to sign African players unless they agree to not participate at the Nations Cup.

The Italian giants currently having Victor Osimhen of Nigeria and Cameroon's Zambo Anguissa on their books.

But the film producer is set to cut ties with the continent with regards to player recruitment, claiming the only condition to bring African players to Napoli will be if they agree not to play at AFCON.

Aurelio De Laurentiis, Napoli, Victor Osimhen, Zambo Anguissa
Napoli owner Aurelio De Laurentiis has been slammed for claiming he wont sign African players. @sscnapoli Getty Images
Source: Twitter
"I told them lads, don't talk to me about Africans anymore!" said De Laurentiis during a streamed event.

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"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."

His comments have been met by severe objections from football fans, with many claiming he is racist.

Napoli lost Senegal defender Kalidou Koulibaly to Chelsea in the summer transfer window.

How fans reacted on social media

@Ay_Miles wrote:

Pure BS... De Laurentis is a clown

@Eniwaiyedaran85 added:

Aurelio de Laurentis has shown his racist tendency by saying that he would not sign African players, unless they snub AFCON. Can he tell South American players not to honor their national team for Copa America? Victor Osimhen should leave that USELESS Napoli asap.

@Bra_Kobe also posted

De Laurentis dey chat nonsense. Why did Fifa move a whole WC tournament to Nov/Dec? Wasn't it about the same weather issues? Why aren't they complaining about that one?

@SadamNeyysuh also wrote

I wouldn’t do business with aurelio de Laurentis he disrespected us

@Iam_Shayour tweeted:

His white players should back out if world cup then since this year's is happening mid season just like afcon

Napoli De Laurentiis owner vows not to buy African players

Earlier, Sports Brief reported that Napoli President Aurelio De Laurentiis has said that he will no longer buy players who turn out for African national teams.

De Laurentiis has claimed that he will only buy African players unless they vow not to represent their countries at the Africa Cup of Nations(AFCON).

In a statement bound to cause widespread reactions from African football stakeholders, De Laurentiis has said that it is unfair for European clubs to keep paying salaries to these players while they are representing other interests.

Lukman Mumuni photo
Lukman Mumuni
Lukman Abdul Mumin is a Sports Journalist based in Accra, Ghana. He has been writing for the past five years. Lukman joined Sports Brief as an Editor for the Local Desk in 2022.