Inter Milan forward Lautaro Martinez could set a precedent and become the first European megastar to reject a mega-money bid from Saudi Arabia this summer.
An unnamed Saudi Pro League club offered the 2022 World Cup winner a mind-blowing four-year contract offer worth €60 million to sever ties with the Nerazzurri on Friday.
However, Martinez has knocked back that monstrous proposal without blinking to pledge his allegiance to the Giuseppe Meazza outfit (via Gazzetta dello Sport).
Al-Hilal are the club in question as they strive to assemble a squad capable of challenging for the Saudi Pro League title.
The Riyadh-based heavyweights have captured the services of two former Serie A stars in the shape of Sergej Milinkovic-Savic and Kalidou Koulibaly from Lazio and Chelsea, respectively.
They have also signed Ruben Neves in his prime from Wolverhampton Wanderers, which must have bolstered their confidence about landing another household name.
But Martinez has stayed immune to a lucrative bid, refusing to follow in the footsteps of his former Inter teammate Marcelo Brozovic, who has joined Cristiano Ronaldo’s Al-Nassr.
Since arriving from Racing Club in 2018, the Argentine forward has been one of the most prolific forwards in Italy’s top flight, establishing himself as an influential figure at the Meazza.
Keen to fend off prying eyes from the Saudi Pro League, Inter have named an astronomic €150m price tag for their headline performer to ensure he doesn’t leave without a fight.
Beppe Marotta won’t have to feel the temptation of dealing with Al-Hilal’s determined effort to land Martinez in all likelihood, as the player doesn’t fancy a move to the Gulf state.
Martinez has been the main source of goals for Inter in recent years, becoming a fundamental part of Simone Inzaghi’s set-up, hence the Nerazzurri’s reluctance to sanction his departure.
He bagged 28 goals in all competitions last season, including the first-half double that catapulted Inter to Coppa Italia glory in a dramatic 2-1 victory over Fiorentina in May.
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