Sander Berge: The man behind Napoli's interest in the Sheffield United star

Cristiano Giuntoli, Napoli’s long-serving sporting director, is the man responsible for resurrecting their interest in Sander Berge as Sheffield United lay the groundwork for the Norway international’s departure.

Friday, 18th June 2021, 4:45 pm

Although the lure of Premier League football also influenced Berge’s decision, combined with the fact he knew he would be a regular starter at Bramall Lane, United’s relegation from the top-flight last term means he is now seeking a move away from South Yorkshire.

According to one leading newspaper in Italy, that has persuaded Napoli to try their luck again - although like Arsenal, who are also keen on Berge, they are unwilling to meet United’s valuation.

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Rather than Luciano Spalletti, who took charge in Campania following Gennaro Gattuso’s departure towards the end of last month, Giuntoli is thought to be behind Napoli’s latest attempt to capture Berge.

Appointed in 2015, the 48-year-old is one of president Aurelio de Laurentiis’ most trusted advisors and, together with the film producer, ultimately responsible for identifying transfer targets.

However, as they look to increase the funding set to be placed at new manager Slavisa Jokanovic’s disposal, United’s efforts to do business have so far been frustrated by the refusal of potential purchasers to accept their asking price.

Sander Berge is a wanted man: Simon Bellis/ Sportimage

Jokanovic is scheduled to begin work on July 1, when his contract with Al-Gharafa expires.