According to reports in Italy, AC Milan are negotiating with Chelsea but not for Alessio Romagnoli. Instead, the Rossoneri are interested in bringing Croatian youngster Mario Pasalic who is yet to feature in a game for Chelsea and has had loan spells in Spain and France.
Gianluca Di Marzio reports that Milan and Chelsea are negotiating to find a solution for Mario Pasalic. The 6ft 1in Croatian had a decent loan spell at Monaco replacing Geoffrey Kondogbia, who moved to Inter Milan following a €35 million transfer fee paid by the Nerazzuri.
Both Di Marzio and Gazzetta maintain that the Pasalic deal has no connection whatsoever with any potential Romagnoli deal. Chelsea have already approached Milan with an offer for Romagnoli and an improved bid is expected in the coming days, but Milan are maintaining a firm stand on not selling the youngster.
The Loan Deal
Initially Pasalic had found it difficult to get into a midfield already boasting the likes of Joao Moutinho, a player who has been reportedly offered to Milan by his agent Jorge Mendes. The 21 year old Hadjuk Split prodigy, who has had a successful spell with Elche in Spain, will probably sign on a dry loan expiring at the end of this season.
Milan had previously signed another Chelsea youngster Marco van Ginkel of Holland similarly two years ago. He was mostly used as a cover for the midfielders that were already there in the squad. The fate of Pasalic will be the same as he will be fourth of fifth in the pecking order after Poli. The signing of a young player on a loan spell makes more sense when one thinks about Andrea Bertolacci’s hamstring injury which is set to rule him out for two months.
Milan have been looking for a midfielder who can play on top of the defence, all summer. While Pasalic is more of a replacement for Bertolacci who is a traditional box to box midfielder, he can play as a deep-lying midfielder who is good with ball distribution. Having scored 3 goals in 12 appearances last season, Pasalic will look to emulate his idol Frank Lampard one day at Chelsea. A loan spell in Italy is perhaps the right learning curve for the youngster.