Mauro Icardi’s exclusion from Inter’s preseason tour in Asia was a decision taken by the player and not the club, Corriere dello Sport revealed this morning.
The Nerazzurri were widely thought to have sanctioned the striker’s omission in a bid to freeze him out of the squad and persuade him to leave.
However, it was Icardi who asked to be left out so that he could focus on improving the strength in his right knee at Appiano Gentile.
Maurito has suffered problems with his knee throughout the last few seasons but only since February, when he was stripped of the club captaincy, has it proved painful enough to stop him playing regularly.
Inter want to sell their former skipper on a permanent deal before 2 September, but Beppe Marotta will not let him leave on the cheap.
If no satisfactory offers arrive for the striker he will stay and train at the Pinetina for another season, despite the fact this would cost Suning €7.6 million between his salary and amortised value.
Icardi may have decided to miss Inter’s Asian tour but his exclusion from every preseason friendly and practice match was a call made by the club and Antonio Conte.
Maurito’s entourage want the striker to be fully reintegrated into the first-team fold before he is sold, but there appears to be almost no chance of that happening.
Inter are likely to leave Icardi out of this season’s Champions League squad if he does not depart before the transfer window shuts.
The 26-year-old might ask to be sold on loan like Radja Nainggolan and Ivan Perisic, if he cannot find the ideal club to continue his career, but he already knows his request will not be granted.