Inter’s loanees aren’t much of an army like other European clubs, but the Nerazzurri still have a hefty amount of talent on the books of other clubs. For some, the loans are just part of the journey before they take the step to the next level and realize their potential. For others, short-term deals are the only way a team will take them off Inter’s hands before their contracts run out and they split once and for all with their parent club. With another season in the rearview mirror, we have a chance to look back on how the players cast away from the Meazza for one reason or another have fared in their journies abroad.
Age - 23
Games played/minutes - 36/2,872
Goals/assists - 13/2
Pinamonti was by far the most successful of Inter’s loan players. He found an immediate starting spot at Empoli and helped guide the newly-promoted side to a midtable finish. The Italian led the club with 13 goals, 7 more than the next closest player. Four of his strikes came from the spot, though he also added on a pair of assists. What’s keeping Pinamonti from getting the same type of hype as other young Italian strikers is the way he’s scoring. He looks like the classic Serie A poacher so far and doesn’t offer too much outside of the six-yard-box. Still, he has more than enough quality to be a midtable level starter for years to come and will probably average something like ~15 goals a season. None of that scoring will come in Nerazzurri stripes, however. Pinamonti lacks the technical quality to ever make a mark at Inter and next on his career plan is probably finding a permanent home. According to reports, newly-promoted side Monza is ready to offer €19 million for him, a win for Pinamonti, who gets a fixed starting role, and Inter, who can pocket a nice fee in return for a player that’s never going to do much at home.
Age - 26
Games played/minutes - 11/757
Goals/assists - 1/0
Sensi was a mid-season addition to the loan list, leaving Milano for Sampdoria in January. After starting the first game of the season for Simone Inzaghi, he quickly got injured and rarely saw the pitch again for Inter. The Italian then left for regular playing time in the winter window, finding a new home in Genoa where was brought in as the attacking midfielder in Marco Giampaolo’s 4-3-1-2. Sensi looked like an immediate success when he scored and put in a solid display in Giampaolo’s opening day 4-1 win over Sassuolo, but as always with the man made of glass, appearances were deceiving. Despite receiving consistent playing time throughout the remaining of the season, Sensi never found his top form (perhaps due to Italy’s World Cup qualification failure, which took away most of his motivation to play). To add insult to injury (technically the opposite in this case), Sensi picked up another injury late in May. At this point, it seems clear Inter can’t rely on him physically, so it’s a permanent move would probably be best. As with Pinamonti, Monza might be coming to the rescue again as they’re reportedly interested in him for €15 million. But we’ll never forget that one month in autumn of 2019 when Sensi was the best midfielder in the league...
Age - 21
Games played/minutes - 15/938
Goals/assists - 4/0
Martin Satriano was one of the stories of the preseason with his fine from out of the blue, even prompting Inzaghi to keep him around the first team rather than loan him out or play with the Primavera. He never really got a chance at a real action, however, so the Uruguayan was loaned out to Ligue 1 side Brest once the January market opened. He got playing time in all but two of the seventeen games he was in France for, starting the majority. In return, Satriano provided 4 goals. He’s shown he has talent, but it probably won’t be until after another couple of loan spells before he’s ready for Inter, assuming the Nerazzurri don’t sell him for a profit first.
Age - 20
Games played/minutes - 30/2,028
Goals/assists - 0/0
Satriano joined fellow Inter loanee Lucien Agoume when he arrived at Brest. The French midfielder spent the entire year in his homeland, registering 21 starts in Ligue Un. Agoume has gotten some nominations to be a vice-Brozovic and it looks like he has the toolbox to succeed in a deeper midfield role. Fbref ranks him highly in the main defensive categories (tackles, pressures, and interceptions), and though his passing doesn’t jump off the page, he’s a neat player in possession.
Lucien Agoume— Haunt (@HauntForzaIM) April 21, 2022
Having a decent season on loan at Stade Brestois 29, I see a lot of Brozovic in Lucien Agoume. Able to shield the ball well, and nice passing to move the ball. Also able to win the ball back in good ways. (Comp by @FCIMcomps) pic.twitter.com/YLfkCDAJqc
I’d like him to stick around at Inter next season and back-up Brozovic, but if Inzaghi deems him not ready, there’s a number of other options from a Serie A loan to plusvalenza.
Age - 19
Games played/minutes - 34/1,964
Goals/assists - 7/9
Shipped off to Swiss club FC Basel in the summer, Esposito quietly put in a fairly successful campaign abroad. He was Basel’s third-highest scorer and second in the assist rankings, starting just about half of their games in all competitions including both UEFA Conference League Ro16 clashes with Marseille. Esposito still is years away from his peak, so he’ll probably be facing loans for the next two seasons, but getting the type of game time Basel offers is perfect for the Italian’s development. If possible Inter should try and send him there for the 22/23 season as well, instead of a Serie A side where he’ll likely ride the bench.
Age - 22
Games played/minutes - 16/1,198
Goals/assists - 0/0
Vanheusden was re-signed from Belgian club Standard Liege last summer only to immediately leave for Genoa. The knee problems that plagued his time in Belgium followed him to Liguria, however, and he missed 20 games, including the last 13 of the season. When Vanheusden was playing, he was a fairly regular starter for Genoa and looked as comfortable as you can at a club like Genoa which went through three coaches while he was there. He’ll probably be back on the loan block next season, but it won’t matter if he can’t find a permanent fix to his injury woes.
Age - 20
Games played/minutes - 14/782
Goals/assists - 0/0
Vaneusden wasn’t the only centerback to suffer through injuries last season. His Italian counterpart Lorenzo Pirola missed out on 10 games for Serie B side Monza, and thus ended the year with just four Serie B starts. Pirola’s game time finally found some consistency in the promotion playoffs, of which he started all four. The 20-year-old still has plenty to work on but he’s shown the makings of a solid defender. Inter might not have much to do with him for any longer, however, as Monza could make his deal permanent for around €7 million after their promotion.
Age - 28
Games played/minutes - 31/2,302
Goals/assists - 0/2
We’re now onto the deadwood section of the loan list. Despite hopes of a permanent move back in August, Dalbert headed to Cagliari on a short-term deal and will be back at Appiano in just a few months after the Sardinian side’s relegation. The Brazilian was a frequent starter under Walter Mazzari and even lined up as an attacking midfielder on a few occasions. His play wasn’t enough to keep Cagliari safe, however, and Inter has to find another team willing to take him next year before his contract expires in 2023.
Age - 26
Games played/minutes - 29/1,394
Goals/assists - 0/2
Lazaro followed much the same storyline as Dalbert, albeit in Portugal with SL Benfica and with a little less playing time. The Austrian, a rotation piece for Benfica at right-back, failed to do much to boost his stock and will likely be back in this article this time next year. It’s possible, however, that he shows something in the preseason to persuade Inzaghi to keep him around, especially with Matteo Darmian, Inter’s main wingback depth on the right, starting to show his age of late. Lazaro’s never gotten much of a look-in under Inzaghi and there’s worse depth pieces to have, but the heavily rumored signing of Raoul Bellanova would make that null anyway.
Which loanees impressed you the most? Who has the quality to stick around at the Guiseppe Meazza next season? Let us know in the comments below.