Inter ahead of Real Madrid for River Plate midfielder Exequiel Palacios

Inter are ahead of Real Madrid in the race to sign highly-rated River Plate midfielder Exequiel Palacios, according to reports.

The talented midfielder was said to be on the verge of signing a five-and-a-half-year deal with Los Blancos, with his contract containing a reported €15m release clause.

No deal took place in January although there was still an expectation that the deal could be revived this summer, although a recent knee injury concern could have set that back.

However, Marca say the €50m signing of FC Porto defender Eder Militao has ruled out any other commitment to investments in the coming months.

Palacios made his debut for River as a 16-year-old and has recently won two international caps for Argentina, attracting interest also from Barcelona and Atletico Madrid.

Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City have also been linked with the midfielder which is said to have speeded up Madrid’s pursuit of the deal.

His agent Renato Corsi told FCInterNews recently that his client would be open to a move to the Milanese giants: “There is no closed agreement with Madrid.

“We had many meetings with them, but negotiations didn’t conclude. We were about to finish them but then, just because of this tiny fracture in his fibula, we didn’t.

“Now the topic has gone quite cold. We’ll see what happens. Meanwhile, I can reveal to you I know for sure that the Inter directors are interested in the player.

“Zanetti called me right when we were negotiating Palacios’ transfer to Real Madrid. I was very pleased.

“I also was because I told him the player and I would be honoured if Exequiel signed for Inter.

“Differences between Real and Inter? No. Zanetti is our countryman. He became an idol for Inter. We’re talking about a great person.

“Lautaro and Icardi are also at Inter today, plus I imagine he’d play in Milan. I really think he’d be able to show his worth on the pitch.

“His release clause? €15m. Real Madrid would’ve paid a bit more to push his transfer through.

“Like I said before, it was almost all done with Los Blancos but then his injury stopped everything.

“They want to wait to see my client completely recover first, but if they don’t decide to act then we’ll look elsewhere.

“Inter are very much an option we’d welcome. He’s young and we’re waiting for him to recover. He’s only 20 years old.

“However, I repeat that he’d like to play for the Nerazzurri a lot. I add that without this forced stop, he would’ve been called up for Copa America.”

Tags Exequiel Palacios