Mauro Icardi reiterated his firm desire to stay at Inter in a face-to-face meeting with the club’s hierarchy yesterday, according to Gazzetta dello Sport.
The Nerazzurri’s management made it clear to their former captain they had no intention of backing down on their hard-line stance, reminding him he is no longer part of their plans.
But Icardi responded in kind by telling president Steven Zhang: “I’m staying here.”
Maurito’s intransigence means it is virtually impossible to envisage him joining Juventus or Napoli before Monday’s transfer deadline.
GdS warned it was more than likely Inter and Icardi would end up locked in a grim legal battle, with neither side seemingly willing to budge.
Icardi may decide to accuse Inter of mobbing, with the ultimate aim of earning the right to terminate his contract and leave the club for free.
Inter are desperate to avoid such a scenario and still hold out slim hope of completing a sale in the next five days.
The Nerazzurri’s hopes of a swap deal with Paulo Dybala appear to have vanished, but Aurelio De Laurentiis has not yet given up on persuading Icardi to come to Napoli.
Napoli have reserved Fernando Llorente and can close a deal whenever necessary, but if they have not done so yet it can only mean they think Icardi might change his mind.
The signs coming out of yesterday’s meeting at Appiano Gentile are pointing in exactly the opposite direction, though, with time now rapidly running out.