Mancini: Geoffrey Kondogbia can be one of the world's best

The Inter boss believes the midfielder will justify his €35 million price tag and also conceded that Xherdan Shaqiri and Davide Santon could leave the club this summer


Inter coach Roberto Mancini says believes new signing Geoffrey Kondogbia can become one of the world’s best midfielders.

The 22-year-old sealed a €35 million switch from Monaco last month, snubbing City rivals Milan to sign a five–year deal with the Nerazzurri.

And Mancini is confident the France international will justify his hefty price tag.

“Geoffrey can become one of the best players in the world,” said Mancini.

Aside from the two or three superstars in his position, he’s already up there. We had to do a lot to sign him but we’ve got a really great player.”

The former Manchester City coach went on to concede that Xherdan Shaqiri and Davide Santon will likely be leaving San Siro this summer.

Switzerland international Shaqiri only moved to San Siro in January but is rumoured to have agreed to join Stoke City, while Santon also leave to make way for more arrivals.

“If we signed [Santon and Shaqiri] in January, then it’s because we believed in them,” Mancini told reporters.

“We have the restriction of a 25-man squad, so we’ll have to do something, and reluctantly some will have to leave. I think they will do well in the Premier League.

“We have to move some players on – if we’re being asked about Santon and Shaqiri that’s because they’re good players.”

Mancini was questioned on other transfer targets, namely Manchester City striker Stevan Jovetic and Chelsea’s Mohamed Salah, but was unwilling to discuss.

“They’re great players but they belong to other teams. Salah is a good player but until his situation becomes clear it’s not right to speak about him,” Mancini said.

“[Ivan] Perisic, Salah and Jovetic are all good players with excellent technical ability.

“Finding players who can play on the wing and as a centre-forward would be good for us, as we’re quite short up front.”

Official: Inter sign Barca's Montoya

The 24-year-old centre-half will join the Nerazzurri on a temporary basis but the Serie A side retain the right to make the deal permanent in 2017

Inter have completed the two-year loan signing of Barcelona defender Martin Montoya.

The centre-half is a product of the the Blaugrana’s famed youth academy at La Masia and broke into the senior squad in 2011.

However, Montoya never managed to nail down a regular berth in the Catalans’ starting line-up and has now sealed a switch to San Siro.

“F.C. Internazionale is delighted to announce that Martin Montoya has joined the club on loan from FC Barcelona,” read a statement on the Italian club’s official website. “The Nerazzurri have an option to make the deal permanent.

“The defender arrived in Milan to undergo a medical yesterday, with the formalities now completed.

“The 24-year-old Spanish defender has won nine trophies over the course of his domestic and international career, and arrives off the back of Barcelona’s successful treble-winning season last term.

“Everyone here at Inter would like to wish Martin a very warm welcome!”

Nerazzurri president Erick Thohir was the first to publicly express his delight at Montoya’s signing.

“It’s a pleasure for us to welcome Martin Montoya to Inter,” the Indonesian told the club’s official website. “I met him at the airport and my first impression was excellent.

“Our squad is becoming stronger by the day and our aim is to keep on getting better and better.”

Montoya is the second centre-half to join Inter on Friday, with the Roberto Mancini’s squad also having been bolstered by the arrival of Colombia international Jeison Murillo from Granada.

Official: Murrillo seals Inter switch

The centre-half has put pen to paper on a five-year contract with the Nerazzurri, who have paid an initial €8 million for his services

Colombia international Jeison Murillo has completed his move from Granada to Inter.

The centre-half agreed a five-year deal with the Nerazzurri in February, with the Serie A side agreeing to pay an €8 million transfer fee that could rise to €10m depending on bonuses and appearances.

Murillo touched down in Milan on Friday and Inter owner Erick Thohir believes that the 23-year-old will prove a fine addition to Roberto Mancini’s squad.

“Murillo has determination and talent,” the Indonesian told the club’s official website. “He’s a young player with great quality and we’re delighted to announce his arrival at the club.

“I know that Roberto Mancini will be able to get the best out of his abilities, while the fans are sure to love him and his never-say-die attitude. Forza Inter!”

Elsewhere, Inter also announced on Friday that Joel Obi had sealed his switch to Serie A rivals Torino and Zdravko Kuzmanovic had been sold to Basel.

Nigeria international Obi has penned a four-year contract with the Granata, who have reportedly paid €2.4m for the midfielder’s services.

Basel, meanwhile, handed over €2m for Kuzmanovic, who has committed himself to the Swiss champions until 2020.

Montoya lands in Milan ahead of Inter move

The right-back is on the verge of transferring to the Nerazzurri after being pictured with club president Erick Thohir

Barcelona defender Martin Montoya has arrived in Milan for a medical ahead of sealing a loan move to Inter.

The Nerazzurri have been active on the market this summer, bringing aboard Jeison Murillo, Geoffrey Kondogbia and Miranda so far this summer.

And Montoya appears to be the latest name to join Roberto Mancini’s side, after Inter published a photo of club president Erick Thohir welcoming the 24-year-old to Milan’s Malpensa airport on Thursday morning.

Inter boss Mancini has swooped for defensive reinforcements with a view to improving on the club’s dismal eighth-placed finish in Serie A last term, with Montoya expected to arrive on a two-season loan with an option to buy for a reported €8 million.

President Erick #Thohir greets @2MONTOYA at Milan Malpensa airport #FCIM pic.twitter.com/ve6vNPu6gk

— F.C. Internazionale (@Inter_en) July 2, 2015

The Barcelona youth product has been seeking a way out of the Catalan club in search of more playing opportunities after Blaugrana coach Luis Enrique told him he was not in the treble-winners’ plans for next season.

Luis Enrique said I wasn't needed – Montoya

The full-back admits he will be sad to leave Barcelona but has his heart set on a return in future

Imminent Inter signing Martin Montoya says Luis Enrique told him he had no immediate future at Barcelona.

The 24-year-old is poised to secure a move to Roberto Mancini’s side after growing frustrated with a lack of first-team opportunities at Camp Nou.

And Montoya admits he was saddened to learn from head coach Luis Enrique that he was not part of his plans after Dani Alves extended his contract and Aleix Vidal joined from Sevilla.

“I’m sad. Luis Enrique told me he didn’t count on me,” he was quoted as saying by Mundo Deportivo.

“I wanted to go in January but they wouldn’t let me because of the sanction on transfers.

“It was very clear to me I had to go when they renewed Alves and signed Aleix Vidal.”

Despite harbouring a desire for greater playing time for much of the past year, Montoya admits he remains hopeful of establishing himself at Camp Nou in future.

“It’s like an assignment for two years. I hope to return,” he added.

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