Friday January 18 2019
The Icardi Show

As yet more contract negotiations drag on between Mauro Icardi and Inter, Richard Hall gets out the popcorn and enjoys the three-ring San Siro circus.

“Don’t fight it, it’s coming for you” may be a line from ‘The Greatest Showman’, but it should also be one of Mauro Icardi’s many tattoos. It references the many defenders who will have seen the lethal Argentine dispatch them after half a chance, but it is also perhaps relevant to his behaviour off the pitch. As his contract negotiations wrangle on in full public view, Inter should also realise that this is his show and this is how he operates. It is not as if this hasn’t happened before. Like it or not, Icardi is the Nerazzurri’s greatest attraction and ‘everything they’ll ever need’. There is no surprise then that this spectacle comes at a cost.

Javier Zanetti may well have fired a warning shot to Icardi and his agent/wife Wanda back in December, as he said that “each person must respect their role.” He was of course referring to the protracted contract negotiations that have been played out through the media, making the whole situation look unprofessional and somewhat crass. As one of Inter’s most iconic professionals and a current vice-president, Zanetti has the right to point out that this is not how an Inter captain should behave, but then Icardi isn’t your normal captain.

Whilst the Nerazzurri have a long line of exemplary captains, just look at Armando Picchi, Sandro Mazzola, Giacinto Facchetti and Giuseppe Bergomi to name a few, there have been oddities too. Icardi may be more Giuseppe Meazza than Zanetti, but when Inter made him captain at 22, they knew what they were doing. They appointed a young man with a very public off the field image, they stuck with him when he fell out with the ultras and they have danced with him in two drawn out contract negotiations.

His wife Wanda may not be seen as a serious figure in the world of football, but the hierarchy in Milan should not underrate her. She has twice managed to get her client two long-term deals with a release clause that will soon be removed, as football’s wealth increases at an alarming rate and €110m for Icardi is an absolute bargain. This in turn brings a premature renewal, a new release clause and the dance continues.

Icardi, who continues to play the game of constantly being both committed to the club and his wife, contradicts the information coming from his agent, who spreads fear into the media that this man just may leave. She knows the value of her spouse, she knows that when he appears on the pitch at San Siro that this is his show.

Even if Inter let him go for an astronomical fee, how do they replace a man who in 194 games has scored an incredible 116 goals in all competitions? When one also thinks about the lack of supply he has had over the years and the amount of goals in big games he scores, it is even more impressive. This campaign he has netted nine times, five fewer that Cristiano Ronaldo. However, he has achieved this with 37 shots, whilst the Portuguese striker has had 92.

Many are criticising Icardi for his handling of the situation. It is likely however, that he will soon sign a new deal and once again this will be forgotten about, at least for the short term.

Former President Massimo Moratti certainly thinks that the Nerazzurri should be savvier in these negotiations. Whilst he wouldn’t commit to whether he would pay the requested €9-10m per annum, Moratti did say “this happens every year.” Inter need to be more proactive in dealing with Icardi and not solely reactive, as that gives Wanda control of the situation.

Inter need Icardi and Icardi needs Inter, he has often said how happy and settled he is in Milan. The union between the two will no doubt continue, but it will cost the Nerazzurri more to secure this, and why shouldn’t it? He is the main attraction at the show.

Watch Serie A live in the UK on Premier Sports.

Have your say...
I don`t see Milik earning that much (and he can score amazing free kick as well). I don`t see Piatek being given more than 2.5m/year at Milan and he`s also a top finisher. Icardi has been built by Inter, let`s not forget that. We chose to play 1 single forward and of course this allowed him to get all the attention. Nobody is above the club and he should be grateful. Club should remove release clause for good, because will keep on milking the club just as she is milking Icardi.
on the 21st January, 2019 at 10:38am
How do Icardi's think Mauro worth €10M? He is useless without supply, just like last night...

Oops, even He'd got supply, he slipped.
on the 20th January, 2019 at 7:54am
He is such a killer in the box. Deserves his raise. Im ready for the time after Icardi, but i will enjoy him as captain as long as he stays!!

forza Inter!
on the 19th January, 2019 at 7:24pm
Doesn't he want to fight the Inter fans?
on the 19th January, 2019 at 2:55pm
a suggestion, why dont u have a comment section on every article? i really think that would be beneficial to u guys fr
on the 18th January, 2019 at 8:14pm

your icon is a joke
on the 18th January, 2019 at 8:11pm
I agree with all your points, Icardi has to be top 3 or 5 strikers in the world. But from a business perspective, Icardi is entering the prime of his career, his agent will continue to seek more and more in wages in which Inter cannot pay. If Icardi played in EPL or Spain he would be making double his wages, inter cannot compete with that. My agrument is that if there was ever a time to sell Icardi - its now based on his age. You wont see same offers at 27-30+ years of age.
on the 18th January, 2019 at 7:53pm
PazzaInter you are deluded mate!!! Okay lets sell one of the best strikers in the world at a time where he is proving his worth and showing how good of a player he is still only at the age of 25. He deserves to be one of the best paid players in the league, give him what he wants!!! One of our best strikers and icons weve had for sometime!! Has proved his a leader overcoming difficulties with the ultras too. Hardly ever injured and gives his all and scores decisive goals, why on earth sell him!!
on the 18th January, 2019 at 6:23pm
@worthless 2 cents Marotta will not revive the club, because everything is not up to him, if it is, Juventus would't let him go.
On the other side Inter can continue the BUU campaign, ignore the half of human population with it, racism only happens to males I guess, and monkey chants and boo noises are the same thing...
on the 18th January, 2019 at 5:33pm
I agree with PazzaInter, now is the time to sell otherwise we will be in the same contract situation every two years and his value will keep going down.
on the 18th January, 2019 at 5:30pm
He hasn't helped Inter to any team trophies. He doesn't earn his pay. Sell him.
on the 18th January, 2019 at 5:29pm
Would be real shame if Inter let Icardi go now that they finally seem to be making the right moves to challenge in Europe and the league. Assuming Inter can secure Champions League play again next season, Icardi should give Marotta a bit of time to start reviving the club.
on the 18th January, 2019 at 5:02pm
one thing is sure things needed to be sorted out by now and end of the season. keeping a low release clauese is clear sign of lacking the faith for your club. its never happen in real and barca. i trust ausilo with all my heart regarding transfer dealings. if wanda wants one sided deal we shouldnt settle for it. sell him or expires his contract out and bring martial in. he got the same cool head as icardi plus he do it eruditely with excellence of speed like our beloved legend ronaldo.
on the 18th January, 2019 at 5:00pm
I disagree, if there was anytime to sell icardi. The time is now. Hes 25 years old, coming off a league leading scoring campaign and just proved his worth in the champions league. Hes also made his international debut and had a decent set of games with Argentina. Its hard to imagine that he will remain with inter throughout his entire career so might as well Buy low, sell high this summer. I think the morata can build a world class team with the funds received from icardi's sale.
on the 18th January, 2019 at 3:02pm
Wanda has Icardi and Inter in her purse.
on the 18th January, 2019 at 1:46pm
Give the player what he wants. He's been our only world class talent who stuck with us during the last pitiful few years. Now that we are building a decent team it would be truly the worst time to let him go.
on the 18th January, 2019 at 8:06am

Post new comment

Your email address is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
If you have your own website, enter its address here.
Maximum 500 characters.
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Enter the characters shown in the image.
Your responses will be moderated, and sometimes edited, by Football Italia before appearing on the site. Your data may be made public and you accept our Privacy Policy. Please keep your comments clean and try to keep them relevant to the blog above. We reserve the right to reject views that we deem unsuitable for publication.