Inter Dismiss Report on Swap of Strikers with Barcelona

Inter were rumored to be part of a triangle of strikers with Barcelona and Sevilla. In such a scenario, Alexis Sanchez would return to the Blaugrana, while the Nerazzurri would get Luuk De Jong. The talks were described to be in their advanced stages. Only the green light from Xavi was missing to complete the deal, Catalan newspaper Sport reported yesterday.

However, the front office of the Italian team shot down the buzz, Corriere dello Sport reports. Yet, the moves could make sense for both Inter and Barcelona. The Blaugrana are searching for one or two forwards following Sergio Aguero’s retirement. When healthy, Sanchez has been pushing for more playing time. He is already familiar with the Catalans, having played there for three seasons between 2011 and 2014. He totaled 88 appearances and scored 39 goals.

Inter would not mind shedding his salary off the bench, which is rather large. When all the other forwards are available, the Chilean veteran is the fourth option up front behind Lautaro Martinez, Edin Dzeko, and Joaquin Correa. The Nerazzurri had been looking for a more physical player that could back up the Bosnian ace more appropriately.

De Jong has not found his footing at Barcelona, hitting the net just once in 11 appearances so far. According to the chatter coming from Spain, he would have transferred with the same formula, on loan. Sevilla, which own his card, would have easily okayed the move. The 31-year-old has not been as prolific in La Liga as he was in Eredivisie.