Lautaro Martinez has committed his future to Inter and played down speculation linking him with Real Madrid.
El Toro is receiving a lot of attention in Italy’s media at present because he has interest from several top clubs, leading to speculation that he could be sold.
Inter are known to be battling serious financial problems which could force them to sell a key player, but Lautaro does not have any interest in departing the Nerazzurri.
“I like Antonio Conte, but even if he leaves I’m an Inter player and I’ll keep working for Inter,” the striker told Libero (via FcInterNews.it) in an interview today.
Lautaro is reportedly in line to sign a contract extension at Inter, despite changing his agent midway through negotiations last month.
“I don’t know if it’s already the moment (to renew), but we’re working with the club and my agent is talking to the directors,” he assured.
“We’ll find an agreement; I’m calm and I’m living day by day.
“I’m also happy to be here and be part of this project.
“If I sign a contract then I’ll respect it; if the club then thinks I deserve more, they’ll call me.
“I’ll listen and in the meantime… I get to work.”
Barcelona were strongly linked with a move for Lautaro last summer, before their own financial problems put an end to their hopes of a deal.
Real Madrid are now rumoured to be interested in the 23-year-old, but Lautaro insists he has no information on the matter.
“There was a serious chance of joining Barcelona,” he confirmed.
“But we finished the season late, there were problems with COVID-19 and I chose to stay, thankfully!
“It was the right decision (to stay at Inter).
“I spoke to Lionel Messi on international duty about it but he never insisted with me (to accept Barcelona).
“I don’t know anything about Real Madrid’s interest, believe me.
“I saw this story had come out, but I’m enjoying this moment and I’m not thinking about anything.
“We want to finish the season well.”
Conte’s future remains very uncertain but Lautaro is clearly hoping Inter’s head coach will remain in charge.
“Let’s hope he stays, we’ve made some big steps forward in these last two years,” the forward said.
“He has made me improve a lot.
“You never have arguments with him, at most they’re discussions which help you improve and he always tries to get the best out of everyone, even in training.
“Conte lives football in a special manner, he called me after the Copa America and we immediately struck up an understanding.”
Lautaro also heaped more praise on strike partner Romelu Lukaku, adding: “Lukaku is better than me, I just give him a hand.
“He’s the best.”