The Italian midfielder has explained the role he played in urging the former Napoli captain to move from Napoli to London.
Chelsea midfielder Jorginho has hailed the club’s former Napoli team-mate Kalidou Koulibaly, describing him as “the best possible choice” they could have made.
Koulibaly joined Chelsea in a deal worth €38million after eight years at Napoli and Jorginho, who played under the Senegalese captain between 2014 and 2018 at Napoli, believes the Blues have the replacement perfect for Antonio Rudiger, who left the club for Real Madrid in the summer. .
“I spoke to Kalidou a lot. I said ‘come on, let’s play together again’, Jorginho told club website.
“I miss playing with you and it’s been a long time!” I told him that a lot. For me, the club – together with the staff and the coach – made the best possible choice by bringing Kalidou to the club.
“I really hope, and I’m pretty sure, that he will be a big help for our team. He’s a fantastic player and a perfect substitute [for Antonio Rudiger].”
“Even before he signed, we talked a lot and since he joined us, I explain to him how it works, what we do here and I help him integrate into the group.
“He’s a really special player and I know he’ll be great for us because not only is he a really good player, but he’s also a great guy off the pitch.”
Prior to joining Chelsea, Koulibaly had been the subject of transfer speculation over the past four years with a number of Premier League sides, including Manchester United, Manchester City and Liverpool, as well as Spanish giants Barcelona linked with an interest.
The Senegal international had been a mainstay in Napoli’s defense since joining them in July 2014, making 317 appearances while scoring 14 goals and left after captaining the side to the Coppa Italia crown 2019-2020.
Considered one of the best centre-backs in the world, the 31-year-old, who captained Senegal until the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations title, was voted Serie A’s best defender in 2018-19 while he has featured in the Serie A. Team of the Year four times.
Koulibaly is currently in the United States with the rest of the Chelsea squad for their pre-season tour and could feature when the Blues take on Arsenal at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Florida on Saturday.
Koulibaly at Chelsea
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