Kalidou Koulibaly: from tobber to topper

Three and a half years ago ended up Kalidou Koulibaly with a lot of question marks from Genk to Napoli. Today he is one of the best defenders in the Serie A.

Kalidou Koulibaly is working on his fourth season at Napoli. © BELGAIMAGE

Barely nineteen mistakes he made in the nineteen the first league games in the Serie A, on average, one error per contest. In the 19 matches went Kalidou Koulibaly 38 duels. Thereof, he won 29. Generally, he is considered one of the best defenders in Italy. That is a nice compliment for a team that last year scored too many goals was to beat Juventus for the title, to threaten.

That is different this year, and there has Koulibaly. When he in 2014 for eight million euros was sold by RC Genk, it was regarded as a clever piece of koopmanskunst of then-sporting director Dirk Degraen. Meanwhile the Senegalese international, who in France was growing up and for the French national youth teams came out, however, a multiple of that sum worth. Last year would still be Chelsea up to 50 million offered, but chairman and owner Aurelio De Laurentiis wanted the entire team, keep everyone together to make this season a throw to do for the title.

In 2014 were at Koulibaly, taken at the insistence of the then coach , Rafael Benítez, questioned. “When I arrived here, I had a year for me to adapt,” he says now. “It was not easy. Until I realized that my place in such a topploeg had to earn and I hard am to start work.’ Under Benítez he ended up at a certain time on the bank. ‘When Maurizio Sarri came, he said:” Listen to me, and you will be a champion.’ He gave me the confidence to then not do so well with me. The key moment was the Europa Leaguematch against Club Brugge. There was swaying all, in my favor.’

Later occurs Koulibaly with Napoli a good chance to win the title, at the world cup with Senegal, the country for which he ultimately chose and for which he is already 21 times came out.

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