With the Euros and Copa America firmly in the rearview mirror, it’s time for transfer rumors to take center stage. As we settle in for what’s sure to be a hectic month until the 2021/22 Serie A campaign begins, the latest hot name linked with the San Siro is that of Cagliari midfielder Nahitan Nandez. The Uruguayan’s agent Pablo Bentancur confirmed reports in the Italian press that Inter is seriously chasing the 25-year-old.
Via Football Italia
Pablo Bentancur to fcinter1908.it: “Things are going well and we are honoured by the interest from Inter. When Cagliari secured their Serie A safety, there was a promise. Cagliari President Tommaso Giulini said he’d help Nandez if a big club came calling this summer. The President has an excellent rapport with Inter, so we’ll see.”
Nico Schira added details on how close Inter and Cagliari are to securing a deal, though according to him a few weeks of negotiations may be in order.
After Lugano-Inter Piero #Ausilio has met Nahitan #Nandez’s agent (Pablo Bentancur). Nerazzurri wants to sign the Uruguayan player and have offered a loan with option to buy to #Cagliari, which ask an obligation. Nandez has already agreed personal terms. Talks ongoing. #transfers https://t.co/Y4vDVbcjaZ— Nicolò Schira (@NicoSchira) July 18, 2021
Nandez has been with Cagliari for two seasons since his €17 million signing from Boca Juniors in 2018. He’s made 72 appearances (65 starts) since, tabling 4 goals and 5 assists. He’s best in the center of midfield but can also play on the right flank and he found his best form last season as a right-wing-back in Leonardo Semplici’s 3-5-2. Since Nandez joined Cagliari, the Rossoblu finished 14th and 16th, barely escaping relegation in the 20/21 season. Considering those lowly placings, it’s understandable that a player of his caliber wants a bigger stage to showcase his talents. Nandez has a clear desire to leave Cagliari and the Sardinian club is evidently open to selling him. But given Inter’s dire financial situation, a deal between the clubs won’t be straightforward. The sale of Achraf Hakimi gives Inter much-needed breathing room but it can’t afford much in the way of signings, at least in this window. That’s why Inter has offered a loan w/option for Nandez’s services according to La Gazzetta dello Sport. Cagliari understandably prefers immediate reimbursement, possibly no less than Nandez’s €36 million release clause. Inter is in no position to pay that sum but players like Radja Nainggolan and Dalbert (or even a Lucien Agoume loan) could be included to bring down the financial requirements of this deal into a more realistic realm.
Nandez to Inter is by no means a done deal but it does have quite a few factors in its favor. Both Inter and Cagliari have a good relationship and perhaps most importantly, Nandez wants to go to Inter. According to Sportitalia, he’s already snubbed Leeds and agreed to a €3 million salary with Inter. From Cagliari’s perspective, it would be a bad look for the Sardinian club if they kept a player who clearly wants away on the island.
Nandez would be a solid pickup for Inter, especially in their current situation where any signing is a bonus. The Uruguayan’s versatility is a major point in his favor and he offers both Inter’s starting midfielders and whoever is brought in to succeed Hakimi a quality backup. Plus, Nandez is a quality player in his own right and has the potential to make a name for himself in Milan.