Valencia manager Gennaro Gattuso is rarely one to mince his words and it often leads to a good interview. Speaking to Diario AS ahead of Los Che’s return to action, Gattuso was open about their plans going into January.
Of the central issue at Valencia for the last three years has been the broken relations between the fans and owner Peter Lim. Gattuso explained that he had never had any issues with him though, and that the two were on good terms.
Following that, he was asked about Valencia’s plans in the transfer market. The Italian denied that Los Che would look for a central midfielder, with Hugo Guillamon and Nico Gonzalez as options in the pivot position. Instead, they will be looking for a winger this winter.
Last week it was reported that central defender Mouctar Diakhaby – key over the last 12 months – had not responded to Valencia’s renewal offer. Amid interest from Italian giants Inter, Gattuso confirmed that they were awaiting his response.
“Now the ball is in Diakhaby’s court, we don’t have it. Diakha and his agent have it.”
“On the Lato theme we have to see if we continue in the same direction or if we change something. We have three players for the same position. We have to wait. It is very difficult for the club to propose a renewal to Toni. If keep just two [left-backs], it could change everything.”
The second half of the answer pertains to Toni Lato. Long-time back-up for Jose Gaya, the emergence of Jesus Vazquez has put Lato’s future in doubt. Gattuso went on to say they were also speaking with Vazquez about whether he should stay or seek a loan for the next six months.
Having just signed a long-term renewal, the left-back position belongs to captain Jose Gaya as long as he is fit. It is no surprise that the other options will be considering their future as a result.
Regarding Diakhaby, it looks as if Los Che have a tricky task on their hands. The French defender will likely feel he can make more money elsewhere on the open market. While Valencia have shown signs of promise under Gattuso, a project in its early stages might not be enough to persuade Diakhaby to stick with it.