THE PL TRANSFER GAMES
by Sammir Goyall
Under new manager Antonio Conte, the Nerazzuri’s are looking to provide a tough competition to other teams at both Serie A and Champions League stage. Its been a decade since that treble winning 2009/10 season where they won Serie A, Supercoppa Italia and UEFA Champions League. The club have officially outcasted their star striker Mauro Icardi and have put officially on transfer market. Stalling of contract negotiations between the club and Icardi’s agent and wife, Wanda Nara. However, Icardi being stripped off captaincy in Europa League match against Rapid Vienna have made it clear that all is not well between Icardi and the club. Inter have signed Lautaro Martinez from Argentine club Racing Club on 5 year deal last year.
Conte wanted to sign a proven striker to add more firepower and score goals for the club. He outlined Romelu Lukaku and Paulo Dybala as priority options for that slot and Inter have started negotiations with both player as well as Manchester United. The 26 year old has scored 146 goals in past 8 seasons playing in England averaging more than 18 goals per season. He scored more than 20 goals per season from 2014 to 2018.
Blessed with a powerful physique, standing at 6’3 and weighing in at almost 100 kilos, at first glance he could almost easily be classified as a traditional target man and nothing more. Perhaps that’s where the defenders of the Premier League have made a mistake. Not only does Lukaku possess the sheer physical ability to come out on top against the aggressive and imposing likes of Vidic and Koscielny, but is also blessed with a fantastic burst of pace to run behind a marker. His feet are amazingly well sorted for a “big man”, being able to rely on his dribbling ability consistently to get him out of tight spots, as displayed fantastically in a number of his goals. Primarily functioning as the pinnacle target man of the side, his control is impeccable when under pressure, using his body well between the ball and the aggressor, a trait only the best target men can use. His finishing is immaculate with the potential of scoring with both feet (though favouring his left) and even a fantastic header. His goalscoring record is nothing but more of a testament to this.
Lukaku wanted to play in a different league and was pushing to move to Inter who shown interest in signing up. United have rejected many proposals made by Nerazzuri including a loan move with obligation to buy at the end of the season. The Red Devils are focusing on completing Lukaku- Dybala swap. But, post swap deal reaching end, Manchester United accept Inter’s € 75 Million including bonuses offer and allowed Lukaku to play in Italy. Lukaku has been given no.9 jersey and is reported to hjave signed 5 year contract and will earn around € 350k/week as wages. Conte is delighted to have Lukaku on board and him pairing up with either Martinez or even Icardi, if he stays at the club past this transfer window