Journalist Luca Pagni has confirmed that AC Milan are interested in Josip Ilicic, but is ‘surprised’ by the fact the Rossoneri are keen on him.
The 33-year-old has 55 goals and 37 assists in 141 games for La Dea since arriving and has been one of their best performers, but Di Marzio revealed earlier in the week how Milan have taken a shine to the Slovenia international.
Di Marzio (via MilanNews) then added that with or without the renewal Calhanoglu, Milan are seriously interested in Ilicic. The player could have the will to fulfil his dream of playing in a top club and sporting director Ricky Massara – who followed him at Roma with Monchi – has sensed an opportunity.
Pagni – who works for La Repubblica – spoke about the Ilicic situation during an interview with MilanNews and gave his take on proceedings.
“It surprised me a bit. You notice that Milan are raising the level. They will go to get another couple of young players and I also expect some releases, because at the moment I don’t see many players to lock down, apart from Kessie and Tomori,” he said.
“Ilicic he has great talent. He has these character problems, but he is not the champion who goes crazy after training, in his private life: he has his own problem, personal, but he can be helped.
“I asked my colleagues who deal with the transfer market and they say that there is interest, but in this period all the teams who want to organise themselves well are moving. It is a good sign if they ask for a player like that, the only drawback is age. Then when you argue with Gasperini it is mathematical that you leave, this is a great advantage for Milan.”
When asked if he would be a good solution, Pagni revealed his belief that Ilicic would be a signing in view of a return to the top European club competition.
“It is a choice in view of the Champions League, where the meter changes radically: not only do you have to have a leg, so players like Hernandez, Bennacer and Calabria, but you need great quality,” he added.
“You can win the Champions League even with a ‘normal goalkeeper’, but you need a Tomori defender and a high level midfield. Ilicic did great things last year in Europe: as mentioned, it’s a sign of the Champions League.”