?Inter have omitted Mauro Icardi from their matchday squad to face Rapid Wien in the Europa League on Thursday, after stripping the Argentine forward of the captain’s armband.
The Serie A giants ?confirmed that Samir Handanovic will lead the team on the pitch going forward, amid rumours that talks over a new contract for Icardi have completely broken down.
?Inter confirmed their matchday squad for Thursday’s match on ?Twitter, revealing that ?Icardi will play no part in the important match.
Key players such as ?Ivan Perisic and Stefan De Vrij will join Handanovic on the field against Rapid Wien, with Lautaro Martinez likely to replace Icardi in attack.
Icardi’s omission from such an important fixture will certainly prompt rumours of an imminent departure from the club. The likes of ?Chelsea, ?Real Madrid and ?Juventus have all been heavily linked with a move for Icardi, but any list of potential suitors for the forward would likely be extensive if he was made available.
Maurizio Sarri’s Chelsea were regularly linked with the 25-year-old during the January transfer window, but instead opted to sign ?Gonzalo Higuain from Juventus. However, should Icardi be made available for transfer, the Blues could reignite their interest to help bolster their options in attack.
Icardi’s wife and agent, Wanda Nara, has forged a reputation as a tough negotiator, regularly speaking to the media about her client’s contract situation. He remains under contract at the San Siro until 2021, but talks of a potential renewal for Icardi have been ongoing for months.
There is reportedly a release clause in his contract which would allow Icardi to leave the club for a fee of €110m (£96m), and it is thought that Inter are keen to increase that clause in an attempt to keep rival clubs away from their star striker.
However, recent developments will certainly fuel talk of a potential transfer for Icardi, who has racked up a stunning 122 goals in 2010 games for Inter. World-class strikers are a valuable commodity, and Inter could be set for a bidding war once the summer transfer window opens.