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Napoli legend Diego Maradona strongly hopes Dris Mertens will remain with the team next season. On Wednesday, the striker scored his 116th goal for the club, overtaking the Argentine`s hits for the Parthenopeans. His contract with Neapolitans, however, expires at the end of this campaign, with the player being linked to an enticing offer from China.
It was not a disappointment to me that Mertens overtook me. On the contrary, I even applauded him. When he scored, I thought of Napoli, but certainly not myself. I watch all their matches, especially those in the Champions League. The duel with Red Bull Salzburg was exciting. He wasn`t pretty, but nice enough, because it`s always great when you win. Mertens was born an attacker, but he didn`t know it. All these goals cannot be scored by someone who is not a striker in their heart.
I wish I had done something to keep Mertens away. A professional is always looking for a better salary, but it is also true that nowhere in the world will he be as beloved, respected, pampered and important as he is in Napoli. So, dear president, don`t let him leave. He is over 30 years old, I know this, but he runs, plays and scores goals with the freshness and enthusiasm of a young boy. However, if he really leaves, Mertens knows that there will always be a place in my Gymnasium in La Plata, Maradona told the Corriere Sports Case.
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