FIFA agent reveals Milan walked away from Kolo Muani as Massara ‘preferred to bet on Origi’

By Oliver Fisher -

AC Milan director Ricky Massara opted to pursue a deal for Divock Origi on a free transfer rather than going for Randal Kolo Muani, according to an agent.

FIFA agent Yvan Le Mee revealed some interesting market background on what happened earlier last year when Milan were in the market for a new centre-forward to help take some of the burden off Olivier Giroud and Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

According to the agent, Milan were offered the chance to sign Kolo Muani who moved to Eintracht Frankfurt from Nantes in the summer, but Massara had his heart set on a move for Divock Origi and in fact chose to conclude the deal with the former Liverpool striker.

Le Mee spoke during an interview with Sportitalia to give his version of events concerning Kolo Muani and Origi last year.

“Milan didn’t want to sink decisively for the player. He was proposed ahead of the summer on a free. It was February/March, but if you don’t close quickly, these opportunities vanish,” he said (via RadioRossonera).

“The Germans were very quick, in Germany there are many players who come from France. In Italy it’s hard to bet on a young player who has little experience, Kolo Muani had only had one season at a good level. Massara preferred to bet on Origi who came from a great team like Liverpool.”

Tags AC Milan Divock Origi Randal Kolo Muani


  1. More and more receipts are coming out every week.

    Chose Renato Sanches over Enzo, end up with Vranckx.
    Chose Origi over Kolo Muani end up with medical bills.
    Milan owners provide plenty of money for Serie A terms without selling players. Matter fact Milan owners have provided the most transfer funds in Serie A over the last few years without any cash flow coming in from player sales.
    The management decisions should be questioned more not just to cry for more money from the owners.
    There is a reason why M&M contracts were allowed to expire and why they only received 2 year extensions.
    Owners don’t take lightly when their managers losing assets for nothing.
    Move Paolo to some ceremonial position like a vice president and sign a competent sporting director
    Moncada needs to be give more say in what players should be signed. He is the true talent evaluator

    1. Yep . We get no money influx from sales. Zero.
      Gigio, Hakan, Kessie, Alessio. All starters gone for ZERO.
      Atletico Madrid bought Matheus Cunha for around 30 mil, he barely played, and 18 months later sold him for 50 mil.
      Fiorentina bought Nico Gonzalez for around 20 mil, very disappointing stint at Fiorentina and they are about to sell him for 35 mil.
      While fraction of our fan base are praising Maldini for selling Piatek and Paqueta for 15 mil less than they were bought 12 and 18 months prior.
      Being a great player during your career has no influence on yoi being a good sporting director. None of the great sporting directors were good players. Most of them never even played football.
      Maldini is in over his head.

      1. Wow, so much hate for one of our most legendary players. The article doesn’t even mention Maldini, but Massara. Btw, Massara is so bad (sarcasm) that Juventus have been rumored to want to take him. Also, Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmunt, two extremely well run clubs, make a habit of employing former players throughout their organizations, including the DS, GM, and president/CEO positions.

        1. Maldini is the most legendary Milan player but he isn’t a player anymore.
          I am criticizing Maldini the sporting director.
          Juventus have been a mess since Marotta left them, so their interest in Massara doesn’t really mean much. He would be their 3rd or 4th sporting director in the last 5 years.
          Borussia Dortmund is a feeder club, and Bayern is the best run club in europe as an organization top to bottom and the most stable financially.

      2. Barca bought Coutinho for over €100m and sold him for £20 “billion” I guess. Same way Chelsea bought Baka for around €40m and are about to let him leave for €100m I guess. Seriously what can you do when a player decides to leave on a free? Tell me what you can do. You make it sound like Maldini just let them leave for free. How long did we try to negotiate with Kessie or Donna? But you people always say Maldini let them walk for free. If Leao decides to see out his contract, I guess that will also be Maldini’s fault. It’s tiring to hear people allege what they know nothing about. Who do you think will be a better director than a man who spent his entire career loving one club?

        1. What can you do if a player decides to leave for free? Poor Paolo Maldini, what can he do when the players agent are playing him like a fool?
          People think that players are conspiring against Milan to leave for free. Players couldn’t care less if they leaves for free or via paid transfer.
          When Chelsea put in an offer for Leao, Leao camp said it’s up to Milan to decide what they wanna do, he was cool either way. He isn’t thinking oh let me continue getting paid “peanuts” at Milan for 2 more years and then leave for free to the EPL. He wants to get paid now. The future is not promised to anyone.
          If you start negotiating on time and you realize that the player is asking too much money and he wants to leave, you sell him.
          You set a deadline until when they gotta give you their final answer and than you make other plans.
          The clubs have avenues how to push a player to accept transfer out.
          No player wants to be benched for 2 years especially if there are other clubs who want him and offer him more money.
          Only bums Like Castillejo and Bakayoko don’t mind being benched because none of the interested clubs are willing to pay them the salary Milan pays them.
          You don’t negotiate with Giggio who was asking for 12 mil for over a year and then after the last game of the season you ask him if he has made his decision.

          1. Players couldn’t care less if they leave for free or couldn’t they? Especially when you have a signing bonus as a free agent or when your agent knows he’s going to get a bigger commission. I don’t know how true but didn’t we read that Kessie had an offer from Tottenham which he rejected? The thing is you make football sound so certain without considering variable factors that could change the outcome of events. I’m sure you’d have given Rebic a new contract after his first two seasons but look at him now. Guy looks lost at times. What if you want to sell a player but there are no buyers? What if there are buyers but the player rejects the move? You can’t just say football is this and football isn’t this as though there aren’t external or even internal factors that make one wise decision look like a foolish one in retrospect. Regarding the Gigio issue, we all know what his agent was like and I’m in no way trying to disrespect the dead. It’s not like we started negotiating with him on the last year of his contract.

          2. “If you start negotiating on time and you realize that the player is asking too much money and he wants to leave, you sell him.”

            FYI, you cannot sell a player against his will.

        2. Kessie said no to Tottenham when Maldini tried to sell him in January, but his contract was expiring in June. It’s too late. You have to do that ahead of time when you have leverage.
          The other thing you said about when nk one wants to buy the players. Gigio, Hakan and Kessie went to teams on the same level as Milan for more money, so someone did want them.
          Even Romagnoli had clubs interested in him.
          Maldini got nothing for them.
          Juve sold Kulusevski and Bentancur to finance Vlahovic deal.
          They sold De Ligt to finance Bremer deal.
          Napoli sold Koulibaly and Fabian to finance Kvara, Kim, Olivera , Simeone deals.
          You might take a temporary step back when you sell a starter but you build a better future.
          While Maldini only waits on money from the owners , he doesn’t know how to generate money by selling players

          1. I have to point out that free transfers typically get higher salaries because of the lack of transfer fee. I know that seems obvious but that’s the only reason why those players you mentioned got more money. And I’m pretty sure Dollarumma signed for near the same Milan were offering.

          2. Why are we still pushing this lie that Gigio signed for the same money with PSG that Milan was offering?
            He makes 12 million at PSG. Twelve. Milan’s highest offer by all the reports was 8 mil. That’s a huge difference.
            Kessie makes 6,5 mil at Barca. Milan is barely offering that to Leao. Kessie was probably offered 4 mil same as Theo and now Bennacer.
            They didn’t leave because of agent fees, they left because they were offered a much higher salary.
            When you know you will get outbid by almost any club in Europe don’t allow players’contracts to expire, Be proactive. Extend them early or sell him on time

          3. So now the argument isn’t whether Maldini tried to sell but it being too late to sell which only proves that contrary to allegations that Maldini let’s players walk for free, he did try to get a transfer fee for the player. How much do you think Milan would’ve offered Origi if they had paid a transfer fee for him? It’s never the same as signing a player for free. You think Inter would’ve given Hakan that extra 500 if they had paid a transfer fee for him? And about someone wanting them, yes someone wanted them but for free. You think Barca with all their financial problems would’ve wanted to get Kessie if he still had some years left on his contract? Are you of the opinion that if we were to sell Theo with the years left on his contract we’d sell him for a measly €15m? The thing is clubs lose players for free and this trend won’t end any time soon. Didn’t we get Kalulu for free? Are we the only club losing players on a free? The great Bayern lost Sule on a free transfer. Oh didn’t Tolisso also leave on a free transfer? Don’t make it sound like Maldini is the worst director because as bad as he is, his work is partly why we won a scudetto and how many years did he take to achieve that? Cut the guy some slack would you.

          4. @Nelli
            Maldini is in charge of contract negotiations, signings and sales.
            If you have players under contract, you can either resign them or SELL THEM. Maldini couldn’t do either, and they left with Milan losing money from their potential sales.
            He failed. Enough with the excuses. You could make a case for an excuse if it was 1 player. It was 4 in 12 months.
            And don’t make me start on bad contracts.
            Do you know in what position we spend the most money?
            Right back. Why? Because Maldini gave Florenzi 3 year contract at 3 mil a season to be injured.
            Calabria 3mil
            Florenzi 3 mil
            Dest 4 mil.
            They had to bring Dest because of Florenzi.
            Florenzi is the worst contract Maldini gave to a player, even worst than Bakayokod. That dude had 2 surgeries last season, and he is missing the whole season this year. Maldini had no issue giving him more money than he gave Kalulu who plays every game

        3. @SheerWill96
          Maldini is in charge of the sporting department of the club. When someone with that position loses 4 assets worth well over 100 mil for a club that is in need of money, he is the one that will be held responsible. You can come up with a 1000 excuses players this, agent that, at the end the buck stops with Maldini. He is responsible. Players look for their own best interest, agent look for players best interest, Maldini suppose to look for Milan best interest. Him loving the club means nothing to me, are you competent for the job you have or not?
          You can have results or excuses, can’t have them both.
          Did you get the jon done or not.
          Gazidis didn’t love Milan when he was hired but he turned the club from a laughing stock to a respectable organization. Why? Because he was a competent professional with prior experience at the job assigned to him.
          Maldini had zero previous experience at his current job.
          This is not about emotions or feelings.
          Gattuso loves Milan but I don’t want him coaching my Team because he isn’t good enough, you don’t win because of love.
          No one says Maldini is the worst sporting director, he is just not good enough to run a club like Milan.

          1. I see your point but in all honesty, I don’t think the situation could’ve ended any differently regarding the players who left for free. The only way we would’ve been able to hold on to Donna was if we hadn’t launched him then maybe he wouldn’t have become so good as to make such demands. If we had launched Plizarri instead of Donna and Plizarri exploded do you think we’d have been able to keep him? It’s not acceptable to lose those players on a free transfer but what can you do when it’s beyond you? It’s like a surgeon trying to repair a liver that’s been damaged from cirrhosis. I’m not trying to make excuses for Maldini I still don’t see how he could’ve sold any one of those players. Just consider Hakan for instance, I think the only club that realistically wanted him was Liepzig and maybe we should have sold him then because at the time he was kinda terrible or maybe not good enough but still if we had offered him a contract then we’d have been able to keep him for longer. Fast forward to covid and Ibra comes along and instills these above average guys with courage to know that they can be better than they are and suddenly they start making demands they wouldn’t have made few years earlier. My point being that there are factors that make negotiations more complex than it has to be. Do you think Krunic would make the same demands as Ben?
            It’s never nice to lose players on a free but you should also consider the vicissitudes of football that complicate renewals and all. Concerning love for the club, my opinion is that it’s an important ingredient to move the club forward. Think back to Fassone and Mirabelli(our most competent directors after Galliani).

          2. @20&8 you’re not far off but there’s just as many reports that state the opposite. The facts are quite clear players who leave for free earn higher contracts than if they were bought. In Kessie’s case Barca couldn’t even afford at 6,5 him unless he was a free. And they had to mortgage their entire future to pull it off along with a few other moves. Further do you remember guys like Luiz Aidriano? Maldini remembers what overpaying for average starters does to a team that already struggles to compete financially. Do you honestly think Kessie is worth 6,5? I know he’s much better than average but he’s not head and shoulders better than Bennacer or Theo. 4,5 was a fair offer, Kessie chose money because who wouldn’t. Maldini can’t control if a club is willing to spend recklessly all he can do is make offers that make sense for Milan. I’d rather have him than guys who operate like Fassone and Maribelli. Remember them and how well over paying everyone went?

  2. Remember when people here were hyping up Origi as this god level striker who finally gonna get his chance?

    Yeah where you all at now?

    1. “can’t get them all right.”
      How I wish Milan fans understood this simple statement. It’s very much understandable as to why they chose Origi over RKM as Origi came from a more competitive league and to some extent was proven at the highest level, even the UCL but in hindsight most Milan fans become the best scouts in the world especially when players like kvaradona or Enzo are tearing up their respective leagues. We’ve gotten so used to Theo that fans have forgotten that it was the same “incompetent” Maldini who personally went to speak to the player about joining Milan. A lot could and should be said but I’ll conclude by saying, “can’t get them all right.”

    2. Yup, I can understand weighing CL experience, a history of clutch performances, and the savings of a free transfer over an unproven player for the same role. Just like with Sanchez/Enzo hindsight is 20/20. As much as we want to blame management the transfer strategy made sense given the known factors.

      1. Well, that would be a good excuse if the 2 players that they went for, instead of the 2 unproven players, weren’t most known for being constantly injured. Especially Renato.

        1. What? Rento was on fire for Lille, he had literally just lead them to a league one title the season before. Origi has a history of scoring important goals and I seriously don’t remember ever hearing about injury problems with him. Transfer markt doesn’t show any major issues other than the odd muscle pull, twisted ankle etc. Can you show me an article that states concern over his injury history?

          1. Ha ha ha Renato Sanches lead Lille to the title!!!. He played in only a 3rd of their games. Check the numbers The rest he missed because of guess what, INJURY. How many games has he been fit for this season at PSG?
            Origi barely played for Liverpool and be was signed while injured.

          2. @ Z Renato played 30/48 games. According to Transfermarkt that’s 18 from injury in the 20/21 season. Last season he missed 15 out of a similar number of games. For reference Bennacer missed 25 games in 20/21. This season Rento has been available for 15/25 games. But I don’t see how this season really factors in to a decision made over the summer. Given that in the summer Rento had been fairly available and very impactful at Lille my original point seems seems quite valid. Remember my friend, you are you enjoying the benefit of hindsight and your recollection of stats isn’t quite accurate. Maldini hasn’t been perfect but show me a director who gets every decision right?

          3. Bro, are you seriously trying to make a case that Renato Sanches is not an injury prone player?. C’mon
            Why do you think he was available for Milan to sign him on free? He is a phenomenal talent but can’t stay fit. And he only played in 23 out of 38 games for Lille that season for a total of only 1200 minutes in the french league.
            Why would you even consider bringing a player with his injury history to a club that already has poor injury history?

  3. What we should have done was sign BOTH at the time. Kolo was free. No excuse not to pick him up. But without a proper budget we always have to picks and choose and thus far looks like we chose poorly…

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