Football agent Max Hagmayr has claimed Valentino Lazaro does not see his future at Newcastle United, despite the Toon agreeing a loan-to-buy deal with Inter Milan for the Austria international.
Lazaro became the club’s second signing of the winter window when unveiled on Friday, having similarly welcomed FC Schalke 04 midfielder Nabil Bentaleb to St. James’ Park days before on a €10million loan-to-buy deal.
But unlike Bentaleb, Lazaro does not hope to see the purchase clause in his deal triggered at the close of the campaign, as Hagmayr has confirmed that the 23-year-old wants to move back to Inter and help the Nerazzurri win the Serie A.
United have a £20m option for Lazaro’s signature and had scouted the right-sided player for several years, with club staff sent to watch him in action with former sides RB Salzburg and Hertha Berlin prior to his switch to the San Siro last summer.
Inter boss Antonio Conte rarely trusted Lazaro to feature in his side’s title-chasing campaign, with the Italian only calling on the 28-cap Austrian to start three of his six Serie A appearances and none of his four Champions League Group Stage outings before he would join us in a temporary transfer.
Conte’s continual preference to look elsewhere in his squad list is the fuel which will inspire Lazaro at St. James’ Park, as he hopes it will convince the former Chelsea boss that he is worth being given a second chance next season.
“The player’s first choice is to go back to Inter,” Hagmayr stated when speaking with FC Inter News. “With more time available, he wants to demonstrate that he can help the Nerazzurri club to win the Scudetto.
Will Lazaro prove to be a good signing?
“Newcastle have been very serious in moving the deal forward and we are happy with how it all went: we are satisfied. Steve Bruce is very happy to have Valentino with him.”
Given Hagmyr’s comments, it would certainly seem as if he and his client are purely using Newcastle to further Lazaro’s career in Italy, but that may not be the worst thing for us.
Bruce clearly wanted Lazaro at St. James’ Park for the remainder of the campaign, and the 23-year-old being fired by his desire for a second chance at Inter should see that he produces top-quality performances all the while he is on Tyneside.
Regular minutes in a Toon side producing solid results between now and the end of the season may convince Lazaro to stick around beyond the current term, too, so Hagmyr’s current remarks are not the end of the road as to our £20m clause being activated later in the year.
In other Newcastle United news, the club aim to rival a Champions League side for the signature of a €40m striker.