There are two main factors that will determine whether Inter Milan move for Wolves linked Porto striker Mehdi Taremi in January or June.
Italian news outlet FCInterNews identify the form of Marko Arnautovic and Porto’s asking price in January as the two main determinants.
There is no question that Inter consider Taremi to be a big target.
As FCIN note, the Nerazzurri likely would have brought the Iranian in already over the past summer had Porto not held out for a steep asking price.
The Portuguese giants asked for a €30 million fee. Inter balked at this.
Therefore, the Nerazzurri instead completed a deal to sign Marko Arnautovic from Bologna in August.
The Austrian was a lower-cost option with a similar profile to Taremi.
So far, however, Arnautovic has made little impact.
Injury is a big reason for this. The 34-year-old has only just returned from a thigh problem that ruled him out for around six weeks.
But even before then, there were questions about Arnautovic.
The former West Ham United and Stoke City striker bagged an assist in his very first appearance this season. But after that, his performances were not overly convincing.
Arnautovic Form & Price Tag Main Factors In Timing Of Inter Taremi Chase
Arnautovic should be back to full fitness after the international break.
Therefore there will certainly be chances for the Austrian to play and prove himself.
And if Arnautovic is able to look like a legitimate backup to the first-choice strikers, scoring or assisting 6-7 goals over the season and providing a physical reference point in attack, Inter will likely just stick with him.
The Nerazzurri put their faith in Arnautovic in the summer. And they’ll give the Austrian the chance to prove that this was not misplaced.
But on the other hand, if Arnautovic is either out of form or showing a lack of fitness in the coming weeks, Inter’s stance could change.
Naturally the Nerazzurri will not want to be light in attack during the decisive second half of the season.
With a tough fixture list on multiple fronts, squad depth will be key.
And if Inter lack trust in Arnautovic, they would seriously consider moving for Taremi as early as January.
Then Porto’s asking price would become all-important.
Inter would be willing to invest €6-7 million if they feel that a player like Taremi is necessary to beef up their squad.
But it is not as though Inter will agree a deal at a higher fee if Porto continue to insist. Not for a player who’ll be available for nothing next July.
And according to FCIN, the 31-year-old striker would be happy to make the move.
Taremi had already looked close to coming to Serie A in the summer. AC Milan had attempted to seal a deal for him in August.
There are other offers for the Iranian. FCIN report that clubs in the Middle East have put in bids. And Premier League side Wolverhampton Wanderers also want Taremi.
But Inter would be a preferable destination for the player, according to FCIN.
Taremi is keen to compete at the highest level in Europe.
Ultimately Inter are leaning more towards a summer free transfer move for Taremi.
But if opportunity and need converge in January, the Nerazzurri will not hesitate, FCIN anticipate.