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Report: Inter Milan sizing up move for Yunus Musah

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Yunus Musah is preparing to play in his first FIFA World Cup, on a stage that will be sure to help draw attention from marquee clubs searching for talent. At least one top-level European club isn’t waiting to see Musah in Qatar before putting the wheels in motion on a move for the U.S. men’s national team midfielder.

Serie A powerhouse Inter Milan is reportedly sizing up a bid for Musah, according to a report from respected Italian outlet Gazzetta Dello Sport. Milan would reportedly make a bid to acquire the 19-year-old midfielder on loan with an eye toward a permanent move, similar to the deal that took Weston McKennie from Schalke to Juventus.

Inter sporting director Piero Ausilio is in Qatar for the World Cup and reportedly working to secure a potential double-swoop for Musah and his teammate Jesus Vazquez, with the Gazzetta report setting Musah’s potential transfer price at around $20 million.

Musah is in his third full season with the Valencia first team, but his first spent playing in his preferred central midfield role. He has thrived at the position playing for Valencia manager and former AC Milan and Italian national team standout Gennaro Gattuso.

The interest makes plenty of season for both Valencia and Inter, with Valencia needing the cash infusion that would come from selling Musah while Inter is eager to bolster its squad with younger players on smaller salaries with an eye toward the future.

Musah has ties to Italy as well, having spent nine years of his childhood living in Northern Italy, about 150 miles east of Milan. Born in the United States, Musah moved to Italy when he was still an infant and spent his formative years there before moving to England, where he developed in the Arsenal youth academy and played for the England youth national team setup.

The son of Ghanaian parents, Musah was eligible to play for Ghana, England and Italy when he ultimately chose to represent the United States, and now he could find himself returning to Italy, and a league that USMNT teammates Weston McKennie and Sergiño Dest currently call home.

What do you think of this development? See Inter being a good fit for Musah? Think he will have a breakout showing at the World Cup?

Share your thoughts below.

Comments

  1. I’m with the others who think this move is excellent. Knows and understands the language/culture … has significant minutes of action under his belt so they know what they’re buying … also an opportunity to grow with a resurgent Milan … checks all the boxes. One outstanding question … is he viewed as “one for the future” or as a ready made replacement for departing players?

    Reply
    • Agreed. Inter uses a 4-3-3 and have about 4 guys they rotate there and 2 of them are 30 or older so I can see why Musah would be attractive, but he needs to consider whether they are offering him a true chance to start or just looking for squad depth. Eventually it will probably be the money that decides it. Professional athletes tend to have the shelf life of a strawberry so I don’t think we can blame them for taking the better offer.

      Reply
      • I think Musah would push the oldsters out of the way fairly quickly. The thing he’s got that’s so attractive is his ability to break lines and a relentless high-energy motor…those two traits in tandem are so incredibly valuable because it makes so many other things so easy. His iron lungs mean you rarely have to sub him and he can give you a full 90 almost every time; that means you can use your subs elsewhere. And that ability to collect the ball deep and drive upfield like a rocket, breaking lines as he goes while leaving pursuers eating his exhaust fumes…that gives any squad just incredible push right up the middle, starts I-don’t-even-know-how-many instant counters, and opens up your entire attack. (We’ve seen how “meh” our own attack is without him.)

        Yeah, I wish he was more goal-dangerous, more clinical and opportunistic in the final third, and was more willing to uncork a shot from distance. That would make him a truly elite midfielder on the world stage. He’s a ways off of that yet.

        Musah would still be one of the first players I’d personally take in any team I built because you can build everything around him. For $20 million he’s an absolute steal. It didn’t take Berhalter or Valencia long to realize how indispensable he is and I don’t think it’ll take long at Inter either.

      • they are all making enough money where if they manage it well they are set for life. unless they have a gambling habit or throw it away, the precise amount is a concern for their accountants. to me making smart career decisions keeps you on the field and relevant longer. surely people have considered what the meaning of a club bench stint is to a NT coach obsessed with form.

        not sure why “dempsey at fulham” or “howard at everton” isn’t the counter-template. i am sure they made plenty of money, the fans adore them and will remember them after they retire. didn’t hurt their careers whatsoever.

        either that or the haaland model. very small ladder rung steps. make sure you start and are prepared for success the next rung up. this musah business he just got to starting US and valencia and you folks want him moved on to another roster fight.

      • Mr V,

        “surely people have considered what the meaning of a club bench stint is to a NT coach obsessed with form.”

        Your club is your day job. The club job feeds Yunus and his family. It’s where the smart athlete focuses all their attention. The national team is unreliable and unstable. If Yunus takes care of his club career , his national team career will take care of itself.

        “not sure why “dempsey at fulham” or “howard at everton” isn’t the counter-template. i am sure they made plenty of money, the fans adore them and will remember them after they retire. didn’t hurt their careers whatsoever.”

        That’s for Clint and Timmy to say, not you.

        Clint spent his entire Fulham tenure looking to win a spot and then move to a Champions League club. And then in 2012, when he finally got that magical season that made everyone realize just how good he really was, he found there was not much interest from those big clubs in spending big money on a 27-28 year old.

        “either that or the haaland model. very small ladder rung steps. make sure you start and are prepared for success the next rung up.”

        There’s only one Erling Haaland. Besides being a once in a lifetime talent, Erling is also very lucky. I don’t think his model is easily repeatable for ordinary mortals.

        2 years at Molde, 14 goals in 39 games
        2 years a Salzburg, 17 goals in 16 games
        3 years in BVB, 62 goals in 67 games

        93 goals in 7 seasons at 3 clubs and just 22 years old

        The next time you see an American forward with that kind of ability and productivity, let us know.

        ” this musah business he just got to starting US and valencia and you folks want him moved on to another roster fight.”

        Yeah Yunus, welcome to the life of a professional footballer hoping to be a regular in the top leagues in Europe. That’s how Clint approached his career, fight for your place every second of the day. I see no reason why the same approach wouldn’t be a good idea for any player, especially USMNT players..

  2. Bravo.

    That’s exactly the kind of squad we want our guys playing for and the level we want them to be at…seems like a perfect fit; he knows the area and the language and there won’t be any culture shock for him – which is huge – and the timing is perfect for him and for us, and he’s positioning himself as well as he can to be a fixture at a traditional Champions League power.

    Would absolutely love to see it. One hopes he could flourish there.

    Reply
    • While Musah is an extremely talented player he’s still far from a finished product.
      At 19 Musah is showing that he’s got a the raw physical abilities (touch, speed, endurance, etc…) He reads the game well and has shown this season that he can pass and distribute exceptionally well. Where he still needs improvement is reading the defensive side…clogging the passing lanes and slowing down the opposition. On the offensive side he needs to add the element of an outside shot as a threat.
      For him to maximize his talent and reach his full potential he needs to be at a club that will challenge him while also nurturing and being patient with him.
      Is Inter Milan that kind of club? Is Piero Ausilio and the Inter Milan’s coaching staff going to provide that kind of environment? I honestly don’t know. Wherever he ends up next I wish him the best.

      Reply
      • i think fans confuse where most of the teaching happens. academies. if you can get in a good academy, great. but there is the 18 year old FIFA rule. by the time you have moved to a first team roster slot, and they sign you on transfer they are looking for a finished product, not a project. they might work on a thing or two in practice. they are not going to “fix you.” they are going to assess if you do the job better than the next adult. you are either ready or not. you do not go there on the theory they will expend time making you ready.

        club snobs keep talking up elite first teams like they are some sort of teaching schools when only some of them have good academies, and most just buy their players. if you’re not as good as they hoped, they buy someone else. the haaland family theory — which i find convincing — is make small steps and show up ready. i think americans until about the last year have been obsessed with prestige and money. do you want your soccer career to go well or do you want money now. fwiw if you make bad career decisions now, arsenal’s zelalem now makes $84k a year as a squadie for NYC. the money and caps run out if you aren’t playing anywhere.

      • “and they sign you on transfer they are looking for a finished product, not a project. they might work on a thing or two in practice. they are not going to “fix you.””

        That depends.

        It’s not as back and white as you portray it.

        Yunus was signed from Arsenal’s youth teams , and spent very little time in Valencia’s youth teams before being promoted to the first team.

        He was the youngest foreign player to ever play for Valencia’s senior team.
        He was the first “Englishman” to play for Valencia.
        He was the youngest foreign player to score for Valencia.

        Yunus is precocious and he’s not a muppet.

        Valencia always had Yunus projected as a central midfielder but they started him out on the wing because as Valencia’s manager Gracia said, it’s less complex for young players on the wing. So you start them out there if possible.

        You’ll notice that they started to move Yunus more inside as he felt more comfortable with their system.

        If this move to Inter happens, Yunus is more of a finished product than he was when he moved to Valencia so hopefully, Inter has a spot and a role in mind for him and it won’t take Musah long to get into a groove.

        He’s 19. No player at that age is “a finished product”.

        Now if they are just stocking up on talent or if there is a managerial change after Yunus gets there well that’s something that Yunus or his people need to research the probabilities of.

        Players like Yunus are not the kind of morons you portray them to be. The reality is all transfers carry an element of risk for all parties involved. And those elements cannot all be known beforehand.

        It is very likely that if he moves to Inter and if he succeeds, he will learn more than a few things along the way and will almost certainly be a better soccer player for it.

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