When Simone Inzaghi and Stefano Pioli turn around to look at their bench during this evening’s derby, they will see Marko Arnautovic and Luka Jovic respectively.
Calciomercato.com write that it will be a strange evening for Arnautovic and Jovic, who probably did not think they would find themselves in this position at the end of last season.
Looking at Inter, Romelu Lukaku’s about-turn messed up the plans of Marotta and Ausilio, who were forced to review their strategies on the fly. Folarin Balogun was a target, then there was Alvaro Morata, Gianluca Scamacca, Mehdi Taremi and Beto.
Arnautovic, 34 years old, returned to the Nerazzurri. He arrived from Bologna on loan with an obligation to buy for €10m and a salary of €3.5m net per season. Then in another operation Inter sold the young midfielder Fabbian to Bologna for around €5m, with a €13m buy-back.
After losing the transfer derby for Thuram, Milan tried in vain like Inter for Scamacca, Morata and Taremi. Then the Rossoneri managers followed other leads, for example those that led to younger profiles like Broja and Ekitike, who remained at Chelsea and PSG.
On the last day of the transfer window, attempts for Willian José (Betis), Daka (Leicester) and Rafa Mir (Sevilla) all failed, so in the end Milan signed Luka Jovic from Fiorentina on a permanent and free transfer.
The Serbian cost €63m when he was signed by Real Madrid four years ago, but now Fiorentina were happy to let him go for nothing. He has signed a contract until June with an option for another season and a salary of €2.5m net per year.