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Napoli hopeful of retaining Higuain

Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis is hopeful of holding on to star striker Gonzalo Higuain, but has revealed a clause in the player's contract allowing him to leave should the club not qualify for the Champions League.

Higuain, who is currently serving a four-match ban following his furious reaction to being sent off  during a 3-1 defeat to Udinese, has scored 32 goals in 38 appearances in all competitions this season, with interest in the forward thought to be high.

However, De Laurentiis insists he is yet to receive any bids for the Argentina international, but stressed the importance of Napoli - currently six points clear of third-placed Roma with six matches left to play - holding on to an automatic Champions League berth.

"I haven't received any offers for Higuain," he said. "If an offer was to arrive then we would have to see but we want to keep him here.

"There is a release clause in his contract if we weren't to qualify for the Champions League, which is obviously very important for a player of his calibre and we hope to offer him that opportunity.

"This summer, I don't think there is any need for major changes. There is absolutely no doubt that [head coach Maurizio] Sarri will also be in charge next season, any stories suggesting otherwise are completely false."