Joao Mario has told his club, Sporting CP, that he wants to leave after the Portuguese club rejected an offer from Inter Milan.
Mario, who is preparing to face France in the final of Euro 2016 has reportedly told Portuguese newspaper Record that he wants to leave the Estádio José Alvalade this summer. Inter are thought to be in the driving seat in their bid to sign the Portuguese international.
The news will come as a boost to Inter, who are apparently are readying up another offer to Sporting.
Inter still have a different card that they can play
Inter’s new majority shareholders also own the Chinese club, Jiangsu Suning, who could be the make or break of this deal.
In order to get around the Financial Fair Play limitations, Jiangsu Suning could sign Mario and then loan him to the Serie A side.
On the rise
Mario came through the Sporting youth system. In 2013, at the age of 21, Mario was given the pursue first team football when he was loaned Vitória de Setúbal.
The youngster was then given his chance at Sporting on his return from his loan spell where he has went on to feature regularly for the Primeira Liga club. In two season in the first team, Mario has made 64 appearances, scoring 11 goals as well as earning himself a call up to the Portugal international set-up.
The midfielder was an apart of the Sporting side that played 2014/2015 Champions League but failed to shine on Europe’s big stage. However, last season’s Europa League gave Mario a platform to build on the European stage. He helped Sporting reach the first round knockout stage and scored away to Bayern Leverkusen, but unfortunately his team suffered a 4-1 aggregate defeat.
Euro 2016 is Mario’s debut at a domestic tournament for Portugal. The 23-year-old has started five of Portugal’s six competition games on their route to the final. Mario is yet to score at this summer’s European Championship but has earned an assist in the 3-3 draw with Hungary, which qualified Portugal for the knockout stage in third place.