Inter Milan confident of landing 25-year-old goalkeeper amidst Barcelona interest

Inter Milan are confident of bringing in-demand goalkeeper, André Onana, from Ajax Amsterdam to San Siro next season despite major interest from Barcelona, according to the latest reports.

André Onana’s contract at Ajax expires in June 2022 and both parties have not come to any conclusions on a contract extension, even though Ajax wants to keep the Cameroonian at the club beyond the summer of 2022.

Onana was the subject of several transfer speculations over the summer including clubs in the Premier League, Serie A and Barcelona, but now looks to be heading to Inter Milan when his time at Ajax is done.

Onana had previously hinted at an exit from the Eredivisie giants last month. Speaking after his return to competitive football with Ajax in their UEFA Champions League match against Besiktas following a doping ban, Onana mentioned that he’s the only one left from the Ajax side who impressed the world four seasons ago.

“When you open a door, at some point you have to close it,” the 25-year-old goalkeeper began. Maybe it is time for me to go. I have done my best for this club and accomplished everything I could. We have won a lot together. When I see the pictures of the Europa League final in 2017, I think I am the last one still here. That was a really great season.”

Inter and Barcelona have remained the most interested in Onana’s services, but the Nerazzurri are now reportedly in pole position to sign Onana on a free next season.

Fabrizio Romano, per Calciomercato, claims that Internazionale have a verbal agreement with the goalkeeper to replace their 37-year-old club captain Samir Handanovich in goal for the next four years. Catalan outlet El Nacional also confirms that Barcelona is facing an uphill task to get their former academy ace back to Camp Nou as Marc-Andre Ter Stegen’s replacement.

El Nacional reports that Ter Stegen is being considered for transfer due to the club’s financial situation, and Onana has been earmarked as a potential replacement for the German who is courting interest for the like of Manchester City, Chelsea and Manchester United.

The Catalan outlet also claims that Barcelona is looking to use the funds they get from Ter Stegen to fund a transfer for Erling Haaland.

And La Gazzetta dello Sport reports that Onana will earn €3 million per year at Inter, although it is not sure if he will immediately take over as the first choice goalkeeper from Samir Handanovic, whose contract at Inter is also in its final stages.

Ajax open to releasing Onana despite hopes of keeping him

Ajax are still hoping they can work out a contract between the club and the Cameroonian international who will be leaving the club for the African Cup of Nations tournament in January, hosted by his home country.

However, the club has stated in the past that they cannot force the goalkeeper to a new contract and will let him leave for free when his current contract expires in June 2022 if he doesn’t sign by then.

“We’ve been very clear. We have been trying to extend his contract for some time. That has not worked out then you allow for him to make a transfer in this past window, that also didn’t work out,” Ajax director of football, Marc Overmars told the club’s media in September.

He added: “You never know in football. But I have to say that, at the moment, I don’t see that [Onana’s contract extension] happening.

“It’s possible but at a certain point it still has to be for a decent sum of money. Otherwise, as I said, we have to go our separate ways. If the offer is not enough, then he’ll leave in July for free.”

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