Jose Mourinho’s Roma have dropped out of the race to sign West Ham United target Ramy Bensebaini because of the defender’s £18 million price tag, as reported by Gazzetta dello Sport.
The former Real Madrid boss was just a couple of weeks into the Roma job when he received the first major blow of his Stadio Olimpico reign.
Leonardo Spinazzola, the rampaging full-back who captured minds, eyes and hearts as Italy stormed to Euro 2020 glory, will be unavailable throughout most of Mourinho’s first season at the helm after snapping his Achilles in the quarter-final victory over Belgium.
“It’s a terrible loss for Italy but imagine how terrible it is for me who won’t have him for about six months,” Mourinho told talkSPORT at the time.
“Spinazzola was playing in an incredible way.”
That means the pressure is on Matias Vina as the Palmeiras defender prepares to pack his bags and head for the Eternal City.
Mourinho wanted a Spinazzola replacement but now Bensebaini could head to West Ham
Gazzetta dello Sport claims Vina will join Roma as Spinazzola’s replacement in a deal worth about £10 million.
That, for what it’s worth, is about half the fee Borussia Monchengladbach wanted for Bensebaini. Mourinho may have spent like a kid in a sweet shop during his time at Chelsea and Real Madrid but he’ll have to get used to tighter purse strings at Roma.
Gazzetta reports Bensebaini, Gladbach’s all-action Algerian, was the “absolute favourite” of Roma and Mourinho. However, an £18 million price tag forced the Italian giants to go for the cheaper option – Vina.
And that could leave the door open for West Ham as David Moyes scours the market for a left-back capable of competing with the injury-prone Arthur Masuaku.
According to Corriere dello Sport, Bensebaini has no plans to extend a contract that will expire in 2023 and Gladbach director Max Eberl has admitted he would rather sell a key player than lose them for a cut-price fee.