Conte changes tack as Everton suffer key blow to January plans

Date published: Thursday 30th January 2020 10:37 - Jonny Whitfield

Inter Milan boss Antonio Conte has decided to keep hold of midfielder Matias Vecino, forcing Everton to look elsewhere for late January moves, according to a report.

Vecino, who moved to Turin from Fiorentina in 2017, has dropped down the pecking order this season and has only made 18 appearances in all competitions, with his 14 Serie A outings mostly from the bench.

As such, the Uruguayan international has recently been linked with a move away, with Everton most strongly credited with interest as manager Carlo Ancelotti looks to bolster his midfield.

Indeed, reports in the Italian press have claimed that the Toffees have submitted a bid to bring the 28-year-old to Goodison Park.

However, according to Sky Sport Italia, Conte has performed a U-turn and wants to keep Vecino in his squad, at least until the summer.

Such a move – along with the signing of Christian Eriksen from Tottenham and the decision to keep 17-year-old forward Sebastian Esposito around – also reportedly means that Conte could change his own plans with what remains of the transfer window.

Inter were heavily linked with a deal for Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud, with Blues boss Frank Lampard revealing that the Frenchman’s agent had contacted the club.

However, with the collection of attackers Conte now has at his disposal, he has reportedly called off the chase for Giroud.

Reports on Wednesday indicated that Tottenham are interested in signing Giroud, who has less than six months left on his contract at Stamford Bridge, with Spurs in need of attacking reinforcements due to Harry Kane’s injury.



However, it was also claimed that Newcastle boss Steve Bruce is preparing to pounce should Tottenham’s interest wane.

In other Everton news, the Toffees have reportedly rejected a €100m bid from Barcelona for Richarlison.

Barca are keen to add attackers before the Spanish window closes due to Luis Suarez’s injury and are long-term admirers of Brazilian international Richarlison, having made an approach last summer.

The Catalan giants’ interest is said to have been firmed up in the shape of an £85m bid that Everton have discarded.

Richarlison recently signed a contract extension at Goodison Park until 2024.


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