Rafael Benítez is set to announce his departure as Napoli coach on Thursday.
The Naples club has announced that at 1pm joint press conference with the club’s coach and president Aurelio de Laurentiis will be held at the club’s training ground. Both are expected to explain that Benítez and his coaching staff will not continue at the Italian club next season.
It is thought the press conference will not see the announcement of what seems to be an open secret, that Benítez will be the next coach of Real Madrid as Carlo Ancelotti’s replacement. Madrid president Florentino Pérez announced earlier this week that a new Madrid coach will not be named until next week.
After two years, the Italian Cup and a Super Cup, the coach will return to Spain to fulfill his dream of coaching Real Madrid. In his final week in Serie A Benítez is preparing for a crucial match on Sunday against Lazio, in which a win should see them move into the Champions League places.
Napoli president de Laurentiis spoke about Benítez’s future today, saying: “Within a day or a day and a half there will be important news, don’t worry.”
The president refused to talk about Benítez moving to Real Madrid, but he was pleased by the work of the Spaniard: “Whatever happens on Sunday, we’ve had two great seasons under Benítez. I’m not denying anything.”