Inter: The January transfer window so far...
12 January at 18:00
Inter and the Suning group have already been active in early January, with the departures of Stevan Jovetic to Seville and the veteran Brazilian Felipe Melo to Palmeiras.
There’s no denying the quality of Jovetic and if there was anywhere he could rediscover his form but after only 5 competitive appearances this season, under two different managers, it was obviously time to leave. Links for a return to Florence faded away and eventually it was La Liga high flyers Sevilla who scooped up the Montenegrin on a loan deal with an option to buy. Since his departure from Fiorentina in 2013, Jovetic has battled a consistent run of injuries and now at the age of 27, football fans worldwide will be hoping the classy attacker can find his feet in Spain and fulfil his potential.
Another departure from Inter is that of 33 year old Brazilian Felipe Melo, who after more than a decade abroad, has returned to his homeland to join Palmeiras on a three year deal. The tough tackling midfielder was bought in by Roberto Mancini but never really managed to string together enough consistent performances, and was always likely to move on in January. Coincidentally, Jovetic and Melo arguably had their best seasons whilst playing together at Fiorentina and just like the Montenegrin, Melo’s career never reached the heights expected when he left for Juventus in 2009.
Along with Melo and Jovetic, other high profile players rumoured to be leaving the Nerazzurri in January are striker Eder, ex-captain Andrea Ranocchia and young gun Assane Gnoukouri. Eder and Ranocchia have been linked with moves to the Premier League with Swansea and Watford believed to be interested, whilst the promising Ivorian is linked with a loan move away to another Serie A squad who could offer him more game time.
Arriving at the club is Atalanta prodigy Roberto Gagliardini. The 22-year-old midfielder comes in on an initial €2m loan- deal with an option to buy for €20m plus bonuses at the end of the season; the deal is expected to become mandatory after a certain number of appearances.
Despite this being his first ever Serie A season Gagliardini has already been called up to the national side, having made just 13 league appearances for Atalanta. It is definitely a risk for Inter considering the player is very short Serie A experience but they had to move fast if they were to get their man as Juventus were also heavily linked to the player.
Liverpool’s Lucas Leiva and Wolfsburg’s Luiz Gustavo were also thought to be arriving at the San Siro, although links seem to have cooled off since Gagliardini’s arrival.
More ambitious targets that the Nerazzurri have been linked with in this window are Roma’s Kostas Manolas and another Wolfsburg player, left back Riccardo Rodriguez. Both targets remain unlikely to arrive, especially the Greek defender, as Roma are reluctant to sell to a direct rival in Serie A.
As we approach the mid-way point of the January window, it looks like it could still be an action packed few weeks in the blue half of Milan.
Ciro Di Baselli