Malaga playmaker Isco, a target for Chelsea and Manchester City among others, has admitted that his club may be forced to sell him to ease their financial difficulties this summer.
The Spaniard insists his focus is still with Malaga and their season’s objectives but conceded that a mooted move this summer is out of his hands.
“We do not know what will happen in the summer. I have my head here, my future is in the hands of Malaga,” said the 20-year-old.
"If the club are planning to sell because they need the money, then I have no say. Everyone knows that the situation is difficult for the club and who knows what will happen."
He was linked in January with a move to Chelsea, Manchester City, Arsenal, Manchester United, along with a whole host of Europe’s elite clubs. He is regarded as the most promising Spanish talent of his generation – at 18 they were already hailing him as the new Cesc Fabregas and, with his club forfeiting payments all over the place and serious concerns over their future, his future is most likely to lay elsewhere.
He did, however, just sign a new contract – his current deal now runs until the summer of 2016 and it’s a testament to his loyalty and commitment to the club that he signed up. I’m afraid though that his contract extension probably just means Malaga will get what they deserve for their star youngster which is undoubtedly more than the £17 million release clause he had built into his previous contract which, understandably, they were keen to increase to £30 million as it is now.
That’s easily what he’s worth and, unlike Chelsea’s new £7.5 million singing Demba Ba, he has shown a great deal of loyalty and decorum to his club by signing a new deal. It seems, however, that Chelsea couldn’t care less what the price is – according to numerous reports they are intent on securing his services this summer.
Manchester City are still reeling from what looks set to be a disappointing season this term and, according to reports in several English newspapers Roberto Mancini intends to spend spend spend again this summer in what is being described as an ‘overhaul’ of his squad.
I wrote in January that Isco would be the ideal signing for City and that their failure to sign him could really cost them this season. They’re slump in the Premier League may be related to many other factors but I’m sure the fact that Mancini still relies on David Silva to create everything is something that has had a ripple-effect on the player and his teammates around him.
There has to be someone to relieve the Spaniard of the creative burden in midfield and his young compatriot could be just the man City need.
Elsewhere, another Spaniard has become the creative nucleus at Arsenal. Isco’s former teammate at Malaga Santi Cazorla has made a very promising start to his Premier League career with the Gunners and his residence in North London could sway the young midfielder to join Arsenal for a reunion.
Manchester United are still looking for an adequate replacement for poor old Paul Scholes who, at 38, really ought be swapping his boots for a nice comfy pair of slippers. He will likely retire at the end of the season and so far, the only pretender to his magnificent throne is Shinji Kagawa who, let’s face it, hasn’t exactly set the world on fire at Old Trafford.
There could be a surprise looming though. Perhaps Isco’s willingness to stay at Malaga is because he loves playing in La Liga. If that’s the case, he may well prefer to stay closer to home and jump on a train to the capital. Spanish champions Real Madrid have had a fairly disastrous season this term and will be looking to make changes this summer. Perhaps a marquee signing of Spain’s most wanted protégée would be enough to console Los Blancos fans.
image: © peacecup