Defender Yet To Agree Deal With Inter
Liverpool’s hopes of signing Lazio defender Stefan de Vrij have been given a boost after it became apparent he has yet to agree a move to Inter Milan.
The Netherlands international is out of contract at the end of the season and is refusing to put pen to paper on a new deal at Lazio. The Serie A side have announced that they have withdrawn their offer of a new contract and that he will leave the club this summer.
Liverpool, Arsenal and Manchester United have shown an interest in de Vrij and all three Premier League clubs are being linked with a possible move this summer. But reports earlier this month suggested that Inter Milan are favourites to secure his signature.
However, Inter sporting director Piero Ausilio has denied a deal has been done.
“I cannot confirm something like that,” Ausilio told Italian TV network Mediaset.
“I can only talk about Inter and our players.”
But the situation is a sensitive one.
Although he is out of contract this summer, de Vrij only free to speak to clubs outside Serie A. That means that while he could open talks with clubs in the Premier League about a pre-contract agreement he cannot hold discussions with Serie A sides until he formally becomes a free agent on 1 July.
Inter still remain favourites to secure the 26-year-old’s signature. But it will be well in to the close season before any deal can be announced.
Liverpool have struggled defensively at times this season despite signing Virgil van Dijk from Southampton in January in a deal worth £75million – a world record for a defender.
But the Reds have only marginally improved since van Dijk’s arrival. They have conceded six goals in six Premier League games with the Netherlands international in the side. That compares with 28 in 24 league matches before his signing.