Inter Milan are reportedly open to parting with Liverpool transfer target Nicolo Barella, according to reports in Italian media.
Calciomercatoweb have reported that the Nerazzurri could be willing to sell the 26-year-old for €50m as they search for ways to fund the summer investment, with Liverpool and Chelsea both monitoring his situation.
The report adds the Italian enforcer “the negative protagonist of somewhat disappointing performances,” having shown “obvious limitations from a character point of view” amid on-field spats with some teammates.
Barella joined Inter on from Cagliari back in the summer 2019, initially a loan deal, before signing on a permanent deal in September 2020.
With 173 appearances to his name for his current side, the 26-year-old has scored 17 goals and delivered 42 assists across all competitions.
This season has seen the midfielder feature in all but one of Inter’s 28 Serie A matches, finding the net on five occasions and providing seven assists, highlighting how important he is for the club, albeit his performances have not reached the lofty heights of previous seasons.
Barella does seem to fit the player profile Liverpool are expected to target as part of the midfield overhaul.
He is an established player who makes key contributions to a team near the top of the table in one of Europe’s strongest leagues, while also plying his trade in the Champions League admirably.
He is also a player that could either complement and mentor a younger signing like Bellingham or serve as the marquee midfield signing if the club are unable to work out a deal for the English starlet.
At 26, the Italian international is in his peak years, and a reported price tag of around €50m should not prove prohibitive, even if Liverpool were to miss out on Champions League qualification.
Then again, whether Barella would want the Europa League or Europa Conference League football next season is up for debate.