Portuguese league leaders Sporting CP have begun talks to turn midfielder Joao Mario’s loan from Inter into a permanent transfer.
The 28-year-old returned to his former club on loan last summer after an underwhelming stint in Serie A, having amassed just 69 appearances with Inter since joining in 2016.
According to O Jogo, the Lisbon club have engaged in transfer discussions with Inter to bring Joao Mario back next season, with the Nerazzurri ready to offload him for €10 million.
Sporting have made a permanent deal for Joao Mario a top priority and with his contract due to expire in 2022, there is optimism amongst the runaway leaders of the Primeira Liga that an agreement can be struck, with the player also keen to remain in the Portuguese capital.
However, the Portugal international’s wages may prove a stumbling block, with Sporting employing a maximum wage of €1m and Joao Mario currently earning €2.7m per season.
Inter signed Joao Mario from Sporting in a €40m deal after he had helped Portugal win Euro 2016, though he failed to catch the eye at the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza and endured unsuccessful loan spells at West Ham United and Lokomotiv Moscow.