The Radja Nainggolan to Inter transfer saga has dragged on for over a week now and has included plenty of he said, she said. However, it looks like a conclusion to the whole affair could be on the way. As reported earlier here on CdT, Radja has agreed to personal terms with Inter. Now there has been an update as to what Roma will be getting in return from the Nerazzurri.
All along, reports have stated, it would be a player(s) plus cash deal so that Inter wouldn’t have to come up with 40 million Euros. In addition to two players Roma will receive 23-24 million in cash in the reported final deal. That cash is likely to fund a deal for PSG’s Javier Pastore, as Radja’s replacement.
From early on Inter Primavera trequartista Nicolò Zaniolo was said to be on Roma’s radar and it looks like he will indeed be part of the deal. However, instead of a second youngster being included in the deal, it looks like Roma will be getting some veteran help to fill a position of need. That help will come in the form of 27 year old defender Davide Santon, according to the latest reports from Corriere dello Sport.
Santon is a versatile defender who can fills roles across the back line, mainly at right and left back, but also at center back in a pinch. The 27 year old comes with plenty of experience having made his Inter debut back in 2009 as an 18 year old. In addition, Santon also made his Italian National Team debut just months later, and was surrounded by plenty of hype. He even drew comparisons to Azzurri great Paolo Maldini from Italy boss Marcello Lippi early in his National Team tenure. Lippi was quoted as saying, “A predestined player that reminds him of a young Paolo Maldini.”
However, he has yet to live up the hype and has made just eight Azzurri appearances with the last coming in 2013. Inter shipped him off to Premier League side Newcastle United in 2011 before he was returned to Inter in January 2015. Since returning to Inter, Santon has played sparingly under various managers, including just six appearances this past season.
Santon will be coming to Rome looking for a fresh start. Meanwhile, Roma will be hoping that EDF is able to get the best out of a talented player, who has yet to live up to his early hype. Santon will most likely never live up to that hype, but at 27 years old he is still relatively young and has plenty of top flight experience. With the way Roma’s roster is currently constructed he can spell Karsdorp/Florenzi at right back and Kolarov on the left during those busy European weeks.
If this is indeed the final version of the Nainggolan deal it looks like Monchi will be getting a few things in return; cash, a talented youngster, and a reclamation project.