Interest, price tag, renewal and replacement: Unpacking Theo Hernandez’s situation at Milan

By Oliver Fisher -

Theo Hernandez is one of the stars of this AC Milan side and is among the best in the world in his position, something which has in turn attracted the interest of elite clubs.

As our colleagues at report, Theo Hernandez has become a primary target for Bayern Munich who are seemingly ready to test Milan’s resolve in the event that they lose Alphonso Davies to Real Madrid.

Milan meanwhile are preparing for an ambitious summer mercato which foresees the purchase of a centre-forward, a reinforcement in defence (if not two) and one in midfield, therefore a total expense of €100m or even more.

Gerry Cardinale will only be able to partly fund that budget largely because of the fact that the Rossoneri will not be able to count on anywhere close to the same UEFA prize money compared to last season’s Champions League semi-final run.

Thus, there might well be the need to self-finance the summer window and this is where the idea of incoming offers for Mike Maignan, Rafael Leao and Theo become more interesting, even if the hope remains to build around the trio.

The price tag

The Milan management for their part do not intend to give any discounts and will not ask for less than €100m for Theo, who they consider to be among the best if not the best player in his role.

However, it is not a figure that is astronomical, especially when considering the inflated prices abroad and the fact that Bayern would be able to divert funds from the sale of Davies.

The sale of the Frenchman – just like that of Sandro Tonali to Newcastle United last summer – would align perfectly with the sustainability strategy carried out by RedBird Capital at Milan.

In fact, the Tonali situation showed above all that there is little room for sentimentality and if a club arrives with an offer for a player that they deem to be fair or even above market value, it will be listened to.

Another factor to consider is that Milan would stand to make a huge capital gain from selling one of their stars, which greatly increases the room for manoeuvre when it comes it incoming operations.

Contract situation

After an inconsistent start to the season, Hernandez has shown his importance in the last few months, returning to his best form while playing both at centre-back and left-back.

He last renewed his contract with Milan at the start of 2022, meaning it is soon time to sit down and talk again about another extension given how football seems to work nowadays.

His contract situation thus becomes another layer to unpick, but among other sources claim that the 26-year-old is very happy at Milan and is open to discussing another extension.

Nonetheless, Theo asked to postpone all renewal talks until the summer because he wants to focus on the current season and help the Rossoneri without any distractions. The obvious retort to this is that he might also want to weigh up his options.

Towards the end of the season, Geoffrey Moncada and co. plan to meet with his representative Manuel Garcia Quillon to talk about new terms. His current deal runs out in 2026 and he earns €4m net per year.

Hernandez will probably want to get closer to or even match Leao’s pay packet, given he earns €5m net per season plus bonuses to get to €7m. Whether Milan will match that remains to be seen, but the discussions will begin on the right foot.

Who could replace him

If Theo were to leave, Milan will focus more on Filippo Terracciano, and will buy Alex Jimenez from Real Madrid for €5m, but that will not be enough given how important the former Real Madrid man is.

A name that could forcefully come back into fashion again is that of Juan Miranda. The Spaniard’s contract will expire in June with Real Betis and Geoffrey Moncada is very fond of him, having scouted him for months.

However, what feels more likely is that Milan would use a big chunk of the proceeds to put towards a more ready-made replacement, and this is where Pervis Estupiñan emerges as a contender.

The Brighton left-back has exploded under the guidance of Roberto De Zerbi, a coach who is also very popular with the Rossoneri management in terms of potentially being Stefano Pioli’s replacement.

Regardless of De Zerbi, however, Estupiñan could be the ideal replacement for Theo, considering that finding a player of his level is almost impossible.

The 26-year-old Ecuador international has six goal contributions (three goals, three assists) in 21 games for the Premier League club this season so far.

Tags AC Milan Juan Miranda Pervis Estupiñan Theo Hernandez


  1. There are only a handful of clubs that can afford a 70+ million price for a player, and more often than not, it’s for a striker/winger/central midfielder.
    Management needs to be careful how they approach this or they risk biting more than what they can chew.

    Wouldn’t be surprised if instead we get a player + money from Bayern … e.g. Zirkzee + 30 million for Theo

  2. I think we all know decent LBs are not abundant, good LBs, even less and quality LBs are only a handful.

    I love all our 3 “ untouchable(till the right offer comes) players” .
    Mike is the most replaceable, Rafa can be replaced by someone like Kvara and you probably won’t even feel that much of a difference (just making an example) but Theo?? I genuinely don’t know how we would replace that guy considering how we play, his numbers and role in the team.
    We sell him, we might regress more than if the other 2 were sold.
    This is because of our system and how much we rely on this guy.

    I don’t know but that’s how I view the 3 unsellables, what you guys think?
    Forza Milan

    1. I fully agree and has been saying for years that theo is our most difficult player to replace so of those 3 players id definitely do whatever in our means to keep him. Hopefully the other two will also stay for years to come but if there is any truth to maignans salary demands he would be the first one i would sell especially if an offer of 80 mil were to arrive.

        1. I doubt its his wish to leave but if he wont renew his contract sure but only at the right price and that shouldnt even be considered unless in the vicinity of 100 mil one way or the other.

    2. Players aren’t replaceable because:

      a) these are players who we love and we can’t just replacing who were in love with otherwise we’re just going on a series of casual dates which whilst fun is no basis to build a family/long term success;

      b) for an office job (like an accountant or lawyer) it takes about 6-12 months to replace a person because the person leaving has to work out their notice period and the person arriving has to get used to the new place, so in elite sport where people have to make a split second decision and mental focus is everything, this period could probably be extended by 1-2 years;

      c) every time we sell a star/a settled position on the pitch we unsolve a problem that was previously solved distracting us from solving problems that need to be solved. Last summer we unsolved the midfield problem by selling Tonali and our midfield has been the weakest part of our team the whole season. The actual problem we needed solving last summer was CF, but instead we signed 3 midfielders.

      1. ” it takes about 6-12 months to replace a person ”

        So… Please remind us again how many hours did it take for Pulisic to make the fans forget about the RWs that left?

        1. To be fair Pulisic replaced players that are easy to forget and were, at best, just decent. Not to take anything from him, he is fantastic this season by many regards.
          Theo is, hate it or not, one of the best left backs in the world right now and I can’t think of a player that we can afford and who could replace him.

    3. I agree he is impossible to replace. Also he is probably our most dashing and exciting player in full flow. Even Leao can’t go coast to coast the way Theo does, so for me that is one of the biggest reasons for fans to watch Milan.

      Unfortunately Bayern hold several aces, they will get 50m for Davies and have an option on Zirkzee

      I remember some pundit breaking down how much Tottenham spent on different full backs to replace Walker, who they sold for good money.
      They spent more on replacements who didn’t work out!

      We don’t need any defenders, we need a DM and striker. With sales of CDK, Krunic, Alexis and others we should easily be able to raise 50m. The club is making good money so there is no excuse for the rest not coming out of pocket.

      2 years ago was a watershed moment, we have another now. Do we evolve or devolve

  3. Selling theo, unless he asks for it, is idiotism 1A. What good is capital gain when you lose a WC player that you will not replace, like at all.

    And this Pervis dude. Can you find someone more random?

  4. Theo/his agents are smart to wait ’till the summer to see what Milan renews Mike are (or not) to then get a better understanding of what they can ask for.

  5. I’m still to see any hard evidence that management wants to sell Theo. Remember folks, because journalists keep writing up these articles, it doesn’t mean that it is actually what management is planning to do.

    For me, selling Maignan is a much better idea than selling Theo.

  6. Theo is the one I most hope to keep of the three, but with his contract situation and his value at an absolute peak I sadly think he might move on. As mentioned above, I think he’ll be the hardest to replace though as he’s absolutely on level with the best left-backs in the world and we won’t be able to replace like for like – this would require a bigger tactical shift than when Kessie left.

  7. Keep Theo And Renew his contract unless he wants to leave . It is hard to find player like him with just 20-30 m euro

  8. Bayern had no problems shelling 80 millions for his brother. If they come (and they 100% will) with a Zirkzee+40 million offer he’s a good as gone. And Moncada will get us that Betis dude for free as his replacement.

  9. Selling Tonali for ovepriced sum is one thing and selling Theo for peanuts (60-80M€) is another. If they were to sell Theo, it should be 3 digits before the letter M. Otherwise it’s just bad business and will f*** things up big time.

    1. Yep. Theo is the most irreplaceable in the squad imo and probably the best in his position. And he should command at least 100m as u said , bare minimum.

  10. At least we are not in the habit of giving star players away anymore.
    But I have a looming feeling that PSG will try to get the pair of Theo and Leao even if Lucas is at Bayern

  11. Pls if Milan want to invest in left side back the should go for Adrien Truffert of Rennes, possessed speed, crossing, good both in the defence and in the attack, no outstanding weakness, above all he’s so good on ground duel and he’s market value is currently at 15m to 20m

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