Inter redirect Esposito to Venezia

Inter are on the verge of loaning striker Sebastiano Esposito to Serie B side Venezia, interrupting his time at SPAL.

According to Sportitalia, Sky Sport Italia and more, a meeting was held this morning and negotiations are progressing rapidly.

He is expected to seal the deal tomorrow, joining Venezia on loan until the end of the season.

The 18-year-old had joined SPAL on loan on September 25 and was meant to stay there until June.

However, after just one goal in 13 games between Serie B and the Coppa Italia, Esposito will interrupt the loan and go to Venezia instead.

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More companies look at Inter investment

It’s not just BC Partners who are in negotiations to purchase shares in Inter, according to the Financial Times, but also BQT and Arctos Sports Partners.

The Nerazzurri’s owners Suning effectively confirmed this week they are in talks to sell part of the club, and haven’t ruled out the possibility of selling a majority share.

British private equity firm BC Partners are already said to be doing due diligence on the club’s accounts, but they might not be the only candidates.

News agency Reuters also stated today that “BC Partners is in talks to buy into Italian soccer team Inter Milan, four sources familiar with the matter said, as top investor Suning looks for resources to inject into the loss-making Serie A club.”

According to the Financial Times newspaper, other companies looking at potential investment in Inter include BQT and Arctos Sports Partners.

The latter would be involved via a Swedish equity firm, EQT.

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Pirlo: ‘Juve poor game management’

Andrea Pirlo concedes Juventus ‘made life difficult for ourselves’ in the 3-2 Coppa Italia win over Genoa, which went to extra time.

The Bianconeri were in total control and leading 2-0, but Genoa fought back to 2-2, so Hamza Rafia got the winner on his debut.

“We made life complicated for ourselves, as we had played the first half really well, then got distracted and it became tougher,” Pirlo told RAI Sport.

“It’s a pity, as we had done what we needed to and should’ve controlled the situation better. The Coppa Italia is a target, so it was important to win and go through to the next round.”

Dejan Kulusevski lit up the first half, scoring a goal and assisting for Alvaro Morata, but fell away badly after the break.

“He is still very young and only really had one Serie A season, so it’s a big step up to Juventus. He has some peaks and troughs, so needs to be more consistent during the 90 minutes, more determined in front of goal and realise every single ball at Juventus is precious.”

There were several young players in the line-up this evening, including defender Radu Dragusin in the starting XI.

“Dragusin made his debut in the Champions League, then 20 minutes against Genoa in Serie A, he is very interesting and showed his quality.”

Inter also went to extra time in their Coppa Italia tie with Fiorentina, winning 2-1 at the 118th minute.

“Pretty much all the games went to extra time, which shows how tough they all were. We are in the same boat and will have a few days to recover and prepare.”

Pirlo was asked why Juve tend to struggle more against the less prestigious sides compared to the big games.

“I don’t think we did struggle, as we were in control for most of it. There were a lot of young players who were in their first real experience at this level, so some mistakes can happen.

“We lacked concentration at times, especially when in a leading situation, so we need to improve the game management aspect.”

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Martinez Quarta shows Lukaku ‘scars’

Fiorentina defender Lucas Martinez Quarta showed off scratches to his neck after complaining Romelu Lukaku fouled him for the Coppa Italia winning goal.

The incident occurred at the 118th minute at the Stadio Franchi, just before Lukaku was allowed a free header on Nicolò Barella’s cross.

Fiorentina coach Cesare Prandelli and several players urged the referee to view the challenge again on VAR, but he refused.

After the game, Martinez Quarta showed off some scratches on his neck via Firenzeviola.it, which it’s claimed were caused by the Lukaku interaction.

Image via firenzeviola.it

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Prandelli saw foul on Inter winner

Fiorentina coach Cesare Prandelli feels the referee and VAR should’ve re-evaluated the winning Inter goal in the Coppa Italia Round of 16.

The Viola had cancelled out the Arturo Vidal penalty with a Christian Kouame effort, but Romelu Lukaku’s free header sealed it in the final minute of extra time.

“There is great disappointment and regret, but we are also proud of the performance, as we were a minute away from pushing Inter to penalties,” said the coach in his press conference.

There were complaints about the Lukaku goal, as Lucas Martinez Quarta said he was fouled by the Belgian, showing some scratches on his neck via social media after the game.

“I do believe the winning goal should’ve been reviewed by the VAR, because 30 seconds from the end, the referee needed to show a little more tact,” continued Prandelli.

“Recent performances have been good, and clearly we still need to break away from the danger zone in Serie A, but we hope these games can help our self-belief to grow. We need more confidence when facing certain moments of the match.”

Franck Ribery was again out injured, so Kouame got a rare start and found the back of the net too.

“I had no doubts he would play well. Without anyone in the trequartista role, we can have two strikers, but when there’s a player between the lines, that becomes complicated. I liked the experience with Dusan Vlahovic and Kouame, but that’s only because we had three midfielders.

“Gaetano Castrovilli was a bit too deep in the first half, but he showed his potential going forward.”

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