Inter Milan defender Alessandro Bastoni has broken his silence on increasingly heated links to a summer transfer to the Premier League. Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur are reportedly set to do battle for his signature as Erik ten Hag and Antonio Conte eye a left-sided centre-back.
According to Di Marzio, Tottenham have already initiated contact with Inter and Bastoni over a potential summer switch. Conte and Spurs sporting director Fabio Paratici are understood to want most of the club’s transfer business completed before pre-season.
The report adds that United have entered the race ‘in the last hours’ as Ten Hag prioritises bolstering the spine of his newly inherited squad at Old Trafford. However, Bastoni poured cold water on speculation surrounding his future on Tuesday night, claiming he’s ready to return to Inter after a summer break.
After playing 90 minutes in Italy’s 2-1 Nations League win against Hungary, he said: “I am an Inter player. I have a two-year contract with Inter. The club has not communicated anything to me. I go on vacation after the national team, and then I start again with Inter.”
Tottenham are expected to heavily back Conte in his first summer transfer window as head coach, rewarding the Italian for successfully guiding the club back into the Champions League in his maiden campaign. And he will be keen to strengthen several areas to maintain their status among Europe’s elite.
Ten Hag is also entering his first window as United boss and will have less to spend, given Spurs qualified for the Champions League at the Red Devils’ expense. He is thought to have prioritised a new centre-back, central midfielder and striker ahead of his debut season in English football.
But in a head-to-head race with Spurs for Bastoni, United would be at a disadvantage. The north London outfit can offer both Champions League football and the opportunity to reunite with Conte, who he thrived under to help Inter win their 19th Serie A title in 2021.
Aged 23, he has already made 118 appearances for the Nerazzurri and has also nailed down a spot in Roberto Mancini’s Italy team. Bastoni caught the eye during the nation’s European Championship-winning campaign last summer and appears to be on the radars of two of the Premier League’s top clubs.
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