Napoli to bid for Reina after ending Cesar pursuit

The Serie A club are planning a formal move for the Liverpool goalkeeper, who shares an agent with Rafael Benitez, after growing tired of waiting for the QPR man
By Wayne Veysey | Chief Correspondent

Napoli are set to bid for Liverpool goalkeeper Pepe Reina after growing impatient at Julio Cesar's reluctance to accept their contract offer, Goal has learned.

As reported earlier, the Brazil No.1 had held extensive negotiations with the Serie A club and has an offer on the table after Napoli agreed a season-long loan with QPR.

But Cesar is believed to want a more lucrative salary package from Napoli, which is set to end the Italian side's interest.

Manager Rafael Benitez has lined up Liverpool's Reina as an experienced alternative to Cesar.

The Spaniard has three years remaining on his £110,000-a-week Anfield contract and the Merseysiders could be willing to listen to offers after signing Simon Mignolet from Sunderland earlier in the window.

Napoli signed young goalkeeper Rafael from Santos for £4m earlier in July but Benitez wants a battle-hardened No.1 for the new campaign, and one who can also guide the 22-year-old Brazilian.

The Partenopei manager shares an agent with Reina, which could smooth the negotiations should the Liverpool man become the principal target.

As revealed by Goal in June, Arsenal held preliminary talks with QPR about signing Cesar but stopped short of making a formal bid.

It is understood the Gunners have now also cooled their interest in the Brazilian, while Roma, another of his former suitors, have turned their attention to Napoli's Morgan De Sanctis, who has been in limbo while Napoli pursue a replacement.

Roma have also targeted the 33-year-old after the new Giallorossi boss Rudi Garcia told the club he wanted an experienced goalkeeper for next season.

QPR need to off-load Cesar from their wage bill – he is believed to earn around £80,000-a-week - as they prepare for life in the Championship.