Porto striker Mehdi Taremi will leave the Portuguese giants when his contract expires at the end of the 2023/24 campaign, but while Serie A duo AC Milan and Inter remain interested in the Iranian, an inability to secure a deal last summer could seem him head elsewhere.
President Pinto da Costa told local media (via La Gazzetta dello Sport) that discussions over a new contract were futile, with the 31-year-old considering significant offers from overseas clubs, that would suggest they have arrived from cash-rich clubs in Saudi Arabia or the Premier League.
“We have to be realistic,” Da Costa complained to reporters. “Taremi has offers he hasn’t accepted yet, to earn €10m-a-year. Give me €10m for Taremi and another €10m for the tax, and I will renew his contract.”
Will Mehdi Taremi join AC Milan next summer?
When questioned whether the club should have sold the Iranian international during the last transfer window, Da Costa took a swipe at Milan for their failure to present a legitimate proposal.
“Milan tried in the summer,” admitted the Porto chief. “But with ridiculous proposals that weren’t even worth talking about. They weren’t even close to the [our] value or the [release] clause.”
With a 37-year-old Olivier Giroud requiring more support, the Rossoneri will be in the market for another central frontman for next term, but may have now missed the boat for Taremi. With Ismael Bennacer and Rafael Leao the highest earners on around €7m a season, matching the attacker’s other offers could unsettle the squad.
Could Inter move for Mehdi Taremi in January?
Last summer, the Portuguese giants’ valuation of Taremi put the Nerazzurri off, as well as the fear that he could miss up to six weeks of the current campaign because of the Asian Cup that begins in January. However, while Porto may drop their asking price to bank a fee for the 31-year-old, Inter will also struggle to compete with a €10m salary.
After 83 goals in 163 appearances in all competitions, the Iranian possesses the skills to reinforce the Nerazzurri’s Scudetto charge, but with Lautaro Martinez experiencing his best goalscoring season with the club, coach Simone Inzaghi may wish to strengthen elsewhere.
While Inter are reported to have strong relations with the players’ representatives, the Italian tactician is yet to be convinced that they need additional backup, with Marko Arnautovic and Alexis Sanchez already available behind first-choice pair Marcus Thuram and Martinez.