Manchester United have been offered the chance to sign Inter Milan forward Mauro Icardi as part of a deal that would see Romelu Lukaku move the other way.
As per a report from Italian publication Gazzetta dello Sport, Inter Milan are set to ramp up their pursuit of Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku. The Serie A heavyweights are reportedly willing to offer star forward Mauro Icardi as part of a sensational swap deal to sign the Belgian.
Lukaku has been heavily linked with a summer switch to Inter ever since Antonio Conte was appointed as the manager of the Nerazzurri. The Italian was keen on signing the Belgian when he was in-charge at Chelsea, but was beaten by Manchester United to the transfer. However, he has now set his sights on Lukaku again and is keen on bringing him to Italy.
Lukaku himself has added further fuel to the fire, praising Conte as the best manager in the world and expressing an interest in playing in Serie A. The 26-year-old fell behind Marcus Rashford in the pecking order at Manchester United last season after hitting a rough patch and seems keen on an exit, with Inter providing him an escape route.
However, Inter Milan have baulked at the valuation of the Belgian international, with Manchester United demanding a transfer fee in the range of €80 million. And in order to bring that price down, the Serie A giants are willing to offer star striker Mauro Icardi as part of the transfer.
Icardi has grown into one of Europe’s most lethal marksmen during his time at Inter, but the Argentine international endured a difficult 2018-19 campaign. The 26-year-old was stripped of captaincy by the Nerazzurri in February, after his wife and agent Wanda Nara had made some controversial comments on an Italian TV show.
Following this, Icardi refused to play for Inter in a Europa League encounter, which led to him being exiled from the first-team for almost two months. The former Sampdoria man made his return to the football field in April, marking the occasion with a goal and an assist. He ended the season with 17 goals and 5 assists from 37 matches in all competitions.
However, following the entire episode, Inter are keen on offloading Icardi this summer and are now willing to use him as a bargaining chip in their attempt to land Lukaku from Manchester United. The report though, adds that the Red Devils are not open to such an arrangement and are unwilling to budge from their demand of €80 million for the Belgian striker.
As things stand, Lukaku’s time at Old Trafford could be nearing to an end. But, with Manchester United holding firm on their stance of a cash-only deal, it remains to be seen if Inter meet their valuation of the 26-year-old. As far as Icardi is concerned, the Argentine is unlikely to remain an Inter player next season, with Serie A champions Juventus interested in signing him.