De Laurentiis: My dream is for Messi to join Napoli

The Neapolitan chief has praised the Blaugrana forward's outlook, and is aiming for another top-five finish this season to match last term's successful performance
Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis has revealed that it is his dream to sign Barcelona star Lionel Messi, due in no small part to the Argentine's personality, as well as his footballing ability.

The 63-year-old has not always always spoken kindly of the Rosario native, branding him a "cretin" for taking part in Argentina's underwhelming 2011 Copa America campaign.

However, he has now admitted that he would love Messi to play for the San Paolo club.

"My dream is Messi," he told Gazzetta dello Sport. "He doesn't even have a tattoo. He's a footballing dream, and is very cinematic."

De Laurentiis went on to say that he is aiming for a top-five finish in the upcoming Serie A season, repeating their performance in the previous campaign.

"I said this last year and will repeat it: we must finish in the top five in the league," he continued. "The problem is that the quality of our football was so high that it was hard to win against a less noble team.

"I don't have a particular goal, we will try to do our best on every front."

Finally, the supremo praised coach Walter Mazzarri for his vision of football, as well as his professionalism.

"He is a man with an eye to the future. A man of few words, but big values. If I were to start playing football, I'm sure that with him, a winner, I would learn," he concluded.

Napoli beat Juventus 2-0 to claim the Coppa Italia in May.