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River Plate midfielder expresses interest in Inter Milan

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Exequiel Palacio’s agent says he “would be honored” to play for Nerazzurri.

Velez Sarsfield v River Plate - Superliga 2018/19
Exequiel Palacios, of River Plate, fight for the ball with Lucas Robertone, of Velez, during a match between Velez Sarsfield and River Plate as part of Superliga 2018/19 at Jose Amalfitani Stadium on February 3, 2019 in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Photo by Amilcar Orfali/Getty Images

A young Argentinian midfielder has expressed an interest in playing for Inter Milan.

According to his agent, Exequiel Palacio would consider it an honor to be able to play for the Nerazzurri next season.

In an interview with FCInterNews.it, Renato Corsi suggested a potential deal to send the midfielder to Real Madrid is far from finalized and he confirmed Inter Milan management – particularly Inter vice president Javier Zanetti – have expressed interest in the 20-year-old.

”Pupi called me when we were negotiating Palacios transfer to Real Madrid, I was delighted, partly because I told him that both I and the player would be honored that Ezequiel could possibly sign for Inter,” Corsi said. “Differences between Real and Inter? No. Zanetti is our compatriot. We talk about a great person. Then today at Inter there are Lautaro [Martinez] and also [Mauro] Icardi. And I imagine in Milan he would play. Of course, it should show its value, but I really believe it would fall together on the pitch.”

The biggest issue with Palacio is the fact he suffered a fibula fracture and will be out until June 2019. That, according to Corsi, was the reason for a potential deal with Real Madrid falling through.

However, in 15 matches with River Plate, Palacio scored a goal and added four assists – including one assist in a 2-0 win over Boca Juniors in September.

“He is young, we wait for you to recover. He is only 20 years old. But I repeat that he would like a lot to play for the Nerazzurri,” Corsi said. “And I add that without this forced stop he would be summoned for the Copa America. Too bad for the injury suffered, who knows what will decide [Argentina national team coach Lionel] Scaloni.”

Corsi suggested Real Madrid was willing to pay up to €15 million to bring Palacio to Spain and that the deal was “almost all done.” He added that Real Madrid wants to wait and see how Palacio recovers before deciding on whether to complete the deal.

Transfermarkt.com has Palacio’s current market value set at €22.8 million.

The potential deal with Real Madrid drew criticism from River Plate as they accused Real Madrid of “going behind their backs” to negotiate with Corsi and Palacios.

Rodolfo D’Onofrio told Marca back in November that he could not believe Real Madrid would act “ungentlemanly” in negotiating without the club’s knowledge.

”It has been confirmed by his agent, and we at River are surprised that a gentlemanly institution like Madrid would negotiate directly with the player, behind our backs, without respecting a club like River,” D’Onofrio said. “It does not correspond to the historic links we have with Madrid, coming from the era of Alfredo Di Stefano until the current day.”

Marca also reported that River Plate was attempting to increase the release clause for Palacio from €15 million to €30 million.

With River Plate, Palacio has experience in the Copa Libertadores and the FIFA Club World Cup along with his match experience in the Primera Division. He has spent his entire career with River Plate in Argentina.

He also has two international caps for Argentina as well as nine caps – along with one goal – for Argentina’s U17 squad.

His youth and injury would be a cause for concern for Inter Milan, who should be actively looking for midfield support during the summer transfer window. However, he does show a significant amount of skill and speed on the pitch.

However, it may be too early to tell just how interested Real Madrid would be and whether the Nerazzurri can use the Zanetti connection to make a deal.


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