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Vidic's injury presents Mancini with a new problem

Originally the idea had been to get Vidic off the books this summer, but a new long term injury probably just blew up that plan. So what happens now?

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It all seemed so simple at first. The squad needed to be reduced, Vidic had a poor first season, and he was being paid one of the highest wages on the team. Everton were interested in signing him and Inter had already signed a "experienced leader at the back" replacement in Miranda. All that was needed was the required fees and contract to be agreed to and the player would be off.

But when it comes to selling players this summer it seems like things never end up being that easy. It turns out that Vidic has a back problem, and a fairly serious one at that. He apparently underwent treatment for this hernia back in July, but the problem persisted and thus surgery is required. The recovery time for the injury+surgery is reported to be anywhere from three to six months.

This situation presents two problems. First, a long term injury like this is sure to scare off any potential suitors of the former Serbian international. Sometimes a transfer will still go through, with either the new player coming to the new club and being treated there, or a transfer being agreed to in principle while the player stays at his old club until he recovers and then officially moves in the next transfer window. Usually this only happens though if the buying club does not need that new player immediately, and is signing him with more of a long-term view in mind. That is unlikely to be the case in the transfer of Vidic since he is 33. He likely doesn't have much playing time left in him, and it would make little sense for a club to bring him in only for him to not play for half a season (unless they were able to sign him for next to nothing).

The next logical option would be for Inter to just keep him around until January and then try to sell him. Well the problem in this one is that Vidic since will be injured pretty much the entire first half of the season, he will not make Mancini's 25 man squad. So he will just be sitting around earning those massive wages for doing nothing. Any team potentially interested in buying him in January would know that they are getting a (by then) 34 year old defender who came off a pretty poor first season for Inter who just returned from a major injury (or is possibly still recovering) and might not be able to return to playing at the levels he had been performing at before (and given that those performances weren't that great, the returning Vidic might not be something we want to see on the pitch for Inter). Any offers that come in for Vidic would probably be considerably lower than his market value (though the club did sign him for free so any money from a sale would be a profit). There is a very real chance though that no clubs make a suitable offer for Vidic (or more likely that no clubs are willing to accept his wage demands) and that the team would be stuck with him and his wages.

There is a third option, for the team to release Vidic from his contract. Now the club would not do this now while he is recovering from his injury (that's just a douchebag move) but in January, if there are clear signs that they will not be able to get rid of Vidic through a sale, then a contract termination might be the best option. He is supposed to stay with the club until the summer of 2017 and if it is clear he is not necessary for Inter and that no team is willing to buy him, it might be worth buying out his contract and saving the rest of those wages.