This evening, fans can expect a heated confrontation when Juventus and Napoli battle it out on the pitch. The Bianconeri will host Luciano Spalletti’s men at the Allianz Stadium in the biggest showdown of Serie A Round 31.

Nevertheless, the skirmishes between the two rivals won’t exclusively ensue on the green turf.

According to Tuttosport via Calciomercato, the Juventus hierarchy has identified Napoli sporting director Cristiano Giuntoli as the preferred option to succeed Federico Cherubini.

The latter failed in his attempts to overturn his temporary suspension, as the Olympic committee upheld the ruling of the federal court of appeal.

Therefore, the Bianconeri are searching for a new sporting director ahead of what should be a busy summer transfer market.

For his part, Giuntoli has been serving in the Southern Italian city since 2015. He has finally built a team that will imminently lift the Scudetto title – the club’s first league triumph in 33 years.

However, the 51-year-old still has a contract with Aurelio De Laurentiis’ club until 2024, and the patron would loathe the prospect of parting ways with his longtime serving director, only to see him sign for his rivals.

Therefore, freeing Giuntoli from his Napoli contract remains the main hurdle in Juve’s path.

As for the other possible candidates for the role, La Gazzetta dello Sport (via Calciomercato) names Milan’s Ricky Massara and Atletico Madrid’s Andrea Berta as potential alternatives.