Marotta opens up about Lukaku’s move to Chelsea, Haaland and Dybala

by | Oct 9, 2021 10:05

Inter CEO Beppe Marotta does not feel betrayed by Romelu Lukaku, admits he wanted to swap Mauro Icardi with Paulo Dybala and that not signing Erling Haaland is one of his biggest regrets.

The Inter director spoke during La Gazzetta dello Sport’s Festival Dello Sport in Trento. He revealed Inter won’t sell a big name in January and suggested the Nerazzurri could make new signings in the winter.

The Serie A champions sold Romelu Lukaku and Achraf Hakimi in the summer and Marotta described negotiations with Chelsea, insisting that he doesn’t feel betrayed by the Belgian striker.

“I know by experience that you must be ready to face unexpected events. Lukaku had told us he wanted to return to Chelsea and with something like this, you can only accept the player’s desire,” Marotta said.

“At that point, a negotiation began, we created our price and imagined the alternatives. These things happen in football, I do not feel betrayed or upset, we evaluated the opportunities, such as cashing in a significant sum for the club’s finances. We carried out a good operation.”

Marotta, a former Juventus director, confirmed Erling Haaland was close to joining Juventus during his tenure in Turin.

“I have many regrets, the last one is Haaland, who could have joined Juventus for €2-3m. In such cases, you have to have the strength to go beyond your budget when they tell you that he is a talent to be signed. That’s where the financial creativity of doing the operation comes in.

Marotta can ‘rule out’ big sales in  the future: ‘I reassure our fans’

“Haaland is one of the best strikers in Europe now. Can he come to Italy now? Absolutely not, there is a huge gap with the Premier League or La Liga, we are a transitional league, not the final destination.”

Last but not least, Marotta wanted to sign one of Juventus’ brightest stars in the past, namely Paulo Dybala. The Argentinean sees his contract expire in June 2022, but according to reports in Italy, he has reached an agreement to extend his stay at the club until 2025 or 2026.

Marotta confirmed he wanted to swap Mauro Icardi with his compatriot.

“I could have signed him at Inter, but surely he will sign [a contract extension] with Juventus now. I think he is in the best condition to represent the present and the future of Juventus.

“I could have signed him when there were rumours regarding a swap deal with Icardi.”



  1. Il Chino

    “Haaland is one of the best strikers in Europe now. Can he come to Italy now? Absolutely not, there is a huge gap with the Premier League or La Liga, we are a transitional league, not the final destination.”

    Is the mentality of Italian football leaders? Become feeder clubs for EPL and at times La Liga? They’ve accepted their faith and openly admitting we are not final destination?

    How is that even good from marketing and reputation point of view? This is the sad state of Italian football, there is no more innovation, no more pride and basically turning Calcio into Dutch league.

    The issues of money and investment lacking in Serie A in comparison to EPL has been apparent as early as 2000s. Did anyone did anything about it to reverse it? NO

    Inter is Serie A champions but had to resort to selling players. Lukaku betrayed Inter. He was not forthcoming about is intentions like Conte who announced and left. This guy kept gaslighting Inter fans proclaiming his love for Milano, then all of the sudden his love for Chel$ea was too much and the club that made him was no longer of interest. I’m glad the got rid of him and adequate replacement came but he put the club in dangerous position. Deeply disappointed what Serie A turned into.

    I cannot see how this league and Country can ever compete on continental stage.


    @ Il Chino

    Serie A missed the boat with Haaland when he was leaving for Dortmund. Several Italian clubs could have outbid Dortmund, but once he left, that was the end of any hopes of getting him.
    But it’s hard to have sympathy with them when they often spend what little money they have on epl has-beens like Sanchez and Ramsey – players that cost a fortune in wages but offer no resale value.
    With oil and TV money flooding into England, Italy can’t currently compete. Spain has gone too, and Germany can’t compete either.
    UEFA have no power, and let criminals own clubs in England.
    They scream against racism and inequality in England, yet are delighted to have just let the Saudi’s take over Newcastle.

  3. joe del monte

    That might be an Inter philosophy but I don’t see Juve operating with that mentality.

  4. feroli

    Of course he is saying the absolute truth – there is no way Serie A can compete with the PL. Just look at what has happened at Newcastle – a grim, cold, nowhere town has just become the ‘richest’ club on the planet. A future Guardiola, Klopp, Turchel, Conte will sooner go to Newcastle than Milan, Turin or Rome because he can win the CL with a PL club – not with a Serie A club. The difference between the two leagues is vast – and probably insurmountable for decades. It will take the whole country to deal with the problem – and it starts with the stadiums. Modernise – improve the infrastructure.

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