Real Madrid announced the signing of Croatian starlet Mateo Kovacic from Inter Milan for a reported fee of a 30 Million. Inter manager Roberto Mancini came out and squarely blamed UEFAa s Financial Fair Play Regime for offloading the highly rated 21 year old to the Los Blancos. Mancini and Inter may have made a huge mistake by selling Kovacic.
Kovacica s sudden switch from Inter Milan to Real Madrid took everyone by surprise. While Madrid fans wholeheartedly welcomed the arrival of the talented Croatian International into their ranks, the news of Kovacica s departure from their club, left the Inter fans stunned.
Kovacica s exit from Inter follows closely on the heels of the departure of talented Swiss winger Xherdan Shaqiri from the club. Shaqiri joined English club Stoke City on a 5 year contract for a fee of A?12 million.
Manager Roberto Mancinia s statement blaming UEFA Financial Fair Play rules for selling both Kovacic and Shaqiri must have irked the Nerazzurri faithful. Earlier this year in May, Inter Milan were fined a 20 million for violating UEFAa s financial fair play rules. a There are rules that have to be respected. I don’t think anyone wanted this to happen but we have the Financial Fair Play regulations to follow. We’re all sorry about it: myself, the president, the management and the players themselves,” told Mancini to Intera s official website in the aftermath of Kovacica s sale to Real Madrid.
The sudden departure of Kovacic from Inter, barely a week before the start of the 2015-16 Serie A campaign, has left the club in utter disarray. During his 3 year stay at Inter Milan, Kovacic was able to firmly cement his place in the hearts of the Nerazzurri faithful through his virtuoso displays for the club. The extremely versatile Kovacic often operated as a deep lying playmaker, an attacking midfielder and even as an inverted winger for former club Internazionale. His ability to drive forward and pick long range passes from deeper positions in midfield is reminiscent of a certain Andrea Pirlo. His excellent partnership with the prodigious Argentine striker Mauro Icardi was the only bright spot in an otherwise forgetful league campaign for Inter Milan last season as they finished in 8th position.
Inter signaled their intent to significantly improve upon their league position this season when they signed 22 year old midfield powerhouse Geoffrey Kondogbia from Monaco in a deal worth a 30 million in June this year. Furthermore, they tied down Mauro Icardi to a new 4 year deal which will keep him the club till 2019. Many felt that the Kovacic-Icardi-Kondogbia triumvirate would be pivotal in spearheading Inter Milana s charge towards their first league title since 2010.
Ironically though, it is now clear that Kondogbiaa s arrival at the San Siro is one of the major reasons for Kovacica s departure from the club. Inter were in desperate need to offset the massive transfer fee paid by them to sign Kondogbia and felt that selling Kovacic was the only way for them balance their finances. The departure of Shaqiri (23) and Kovacic (21) has also dealt a massive blow to Intera s ambitions of building a team for the future.
Former Inter Milan midfielder Luis Suarez likened Kovacica s departure from the club to that of Andrea Pirlo. The Italian magician was sold by Inter to cross town rivals AC Milan in June, 2001 after he was unable to secure a place in the Nerazzurria s playing XI. a Mateo was key to Intera s future; hea s a player who is at a superior level. The comparison with Pirlo is quite clear to see. He has the class to become the next Pirloa , told Suarez in an interview to La Gazzetta dello Sport.
It remains to be seen whether Kovacic can go on to fulfil his immense potential and become a future star for Real Madrid. But what is certain is that Kovacica s exit from the Inter Milan has dealt a massive blow to its ambitions of returning to the pinnacle of Italian football once again.