Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper Guglielmo Vicario was Inter Milan’s top option to replace Andre Onana – but Yann Sommer was far from a fallback.
This is the view in today’s print edition of Milan-based newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport, via FCInterNews.
A summer departure of Onana always looked like it was a possibility for Inter.
The Cameroonian’s outstanding form last season, particularly in the Champions League, attracted the interest of Europe’s elite.
Teams in the Premier League in particular wanted Onana. Chelsea were certainly keen on the 27-year-old, whilst Manchester United ultimately were the club who made the decisive effort.
And so Inter were always strategizing as to how exactly they could replace Onana.
Vicario was by all accounts Inter’s first-choice. The Italian had done an outstanding job at Empoli over each of the past two seasons, and particularly given his familiarity with Serie A seemed like a very natural successor to Onana in the Nerazzurri goal.
But unfortunately for Inter, Spurs moved for Vicario first.
The Londoners made their move for the 27-year-old right at the start of the summer. They secured his signature in a whirlwind round of negotiations with Empoli.
Therefore, Inter had to look elsewhere.
Inter Missed Out On Vicario To Replace Onana – But Sommer No Mere Fallback Option
Inter showed interest in a couple other young keepers.
But in both case, some combination of transfer fees and skepticism of the player’s suitability caused Inter to ultimately drop their interest.
In the case of Vicario, Inter saw the then-Empoli keeper as a genuinely like-for-like replacement for Onana. The Italian could have taken over from the Cameroonian as the long-term Number One.
But with Vicario out of the picture, Inter instead decided to move for a veteran goalkeeper as a shorter-term solution.
34-year-old Swiss international Yann Sommer has been on Inter’s radar for a long time.
And the former Bayern Munich and Borussia Monchengladbach man certainly arrived with a safe pair of hands.
And so far this season, Sommer has been exactly that for Inter.
Whilst the Swiss did make a costly error against Sassuolo last Wednesday’s Serie A defeat, he was also responsible for a string of saves that kept Inter in their 1-1 Champions League draw away to Real Sociedad.
Unlike Vicario (or Onana) Sommer is not exactly a player for the next decade.
But for the time being, Inter won’t be regretting missing out on Vicario too much. They’ve gone with a different, but no less effective option in the position.