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Inter Milan offered Juan Mata by Manchester United; but club focused on Monaco's Keita Balde

Juan Mata of Manchester United

Bengaluru, August 8: Manchester United have reportedly offered Inter Milan the chance to sign their attacking midfielder Juan Mata but the idea was soon dismissed by the Serie A side.

Inter Milan have been one of the most active clubs during the transfer market this summer. Their imminent return to the UEFA Champions League has made them bolster their side considerably, and they have already added quality players such as Radja Nainggolan, Stefan De Vrij, Sime Vrsaljko and Lautaro Martinez, among others.

The Serie A, however, are still eager to land one or two creative players in their side. The Milan-based side are apparently targetting a player to replace their aged right winger Antonio Candreva and knowing the event, the Red Devils apparently proposed the idea to sell Mata to them.

So far, the Nerazzurri are yet to close on to the Red Devils’ proposal and it seems now they are rather focused on securing a deal for Monaco’s Keita Balde instead.

Mata has been a United player for the past four-and-a-half years, having arrived at Old Trafford as a marquee acquisition in January 2014 under David Moyes.

As a Manchester United player, the 30-year-old has won the FA Cup, the League Cup and the UEFA Europa League but he hasn't sparkled quite as brightly in the last couple of campaigns.

Moreover, with age also catching up to the Spaniard, it certainly makes sense of United to get rid of the player soon. However, with the profile that Inter were looking, Mata does not fit in. And with just two days remaining before the English transfer market closes and United already grappling with a shortage of right wingers, Mata's departure seems unlikely at the moment.

Inter boss Luciano Spaletti is apparently eager to build a team with young blood and has consequently gone after players under the age of 30 in the transfer market. Keita Balde, who is 23, has now become one of the main targets of the Italian side. Inter have already offered Monaco their proposal and are yet to hear back. Furthermore, there is no clarity on whether Monaco will accept it either.

The Senegal international already has experience of playing in the Serie A as he was with Lazio before moving to Monaco. Keita registered eight goals and five assists in 23 Ligue 1 appearances last term and also recently participated in the FIFA World Cup 2018 in Russia.

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    Story first published: Wednesday, August 8, 2018, 14:30 [IST]
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