First of all, Congratulations to FC Barcelona for winning their fourth Champions League in 10 years against the well-organized Juventus. It was a really fun game to watch and there were many incredible players on the pitch, both veterans like Iniesta, Messi, Pirlo, and promising youngsters like Pogba, Neymar, and Morata, so it was a must-see event for every football fan.
Erick Thohir was in Berlin on Saturday, and before attending the final he he had some business to handle. Not long ago we talked about Inter's strong interest in Mehdi Benatia, who is currently playing for FC Bayern, and the meeting between the Indonesian tycoon and the Bavarians focused on just that.
Unfortunately, it seems that FC Bayern's delegates rebuffed Inter Milan's advances to acquire the Moroccan defender, who showed the interest in returning to Italy after playing for Roma and Udinese earlier in his career. The Bavarian side have full trust in Mehdi - even if he failed to live up to expectations in his first season there - so they want him to stay with them.
Is Benatia the quality defender Inter need to step up their game next year? Thohir believes so, but he is also putting other options in place in case Plan A falls through. Aymen Abdennour is just behind Benatia on Thohir's shopping list, and has been scouted many times this season by Inter's staff. The 26-year-old Tunisian international played a great season with Monaco and now has many European clubs tracking him, so Thohir needs to be very fast and convincing if he really considers Abdennour to be the right addition to his team.
It's obvious that all these rumors can only become reality after some players are sold by Inter, because these moves would not be cheap. There are less and less young quality defenders year after year, and the fact that Inter won't be competing in European competition next season will presumably make some players think twice before choosing to play for the Nerazzurri. Paying them more than what they are worth could be the only way of convincing them.