Sat 18 March 2023 17:00, UK

Inter Milan plan to use their Champions League quarter-final with Benfica to convince Alex Grimaldo to snub a transfer to Newcastle United. The defender is about to be a free agent.

That is according to CalcioMercatoWeb, which reports the Nerazzurri now want to try and take advantage of the UEFA encounter. San Siro chiefs have identified Grimaldo as a strong target for this summer as the Serie A side believe he has a really sensational range of skills.

Inter Milan admire that Grimaldo has proven himself to be as adept in the defensive zones as his attacking efforts. The 27-year-old has recorded five goals and 13 assists in 42 games across all competitions so far this season. He penned three assists over eight UCL fixtures.

Photo by Gualter Fatia/Getty Images

Inter Milan will rival Newcastle to sign Alex Grimaldo in a free transfer

So, with Grimaldo due to be a free agent from July 1, Inter Milan are eager to move ahead of the likely queue for his transfer. Chairman Giuseppe Marotta intends to use the quarter-final tie with Benfica to persuade the Spaniard to reject any new contract and move to San Siro.

The Nerazzurri are keen to thwart Juventus’ interest in the defender but the Turin side are not their only rival. AS has reported that Newcastle have approached Grimaldo to discuss a transfer for once his contract at Benfica expires. Atletico Madrid are tracking his situation.

Bayer Leverkusen, Fulham and Juventus have also approached Grimaldo, like Newcastle, to discuss the Benfica star’s free transfer. While The Athletic also reports that the former U21 international is now certain to leave the Estadio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica as a free agent.

Photo by Valter Gouveia/Eurasia Sport Images/Getty Images

Giuseppe Marotta could scupper Eddie Howe’s hopes of signing the Benfica star

Marotta, though, could scupper Eddie Howe’s hopes for singing the defender Benfica boss Roger Schmidt calls ‘extraordinary’. Inter Milan can show Grimaldo what is on offer at San Siro if he snubs a free transfer to Newcastle et al when he visits in the Champions League.

UEFA drew Inter Milan to take on Benfica in the quarter-finals of the Champions League on Friday. The Nerazzurri visit the Liga Portugal outfit on April 11. They then host As Aguias at San Siro on April 19. It is a repeat of the 1964/65 European Cup final that Inter edged 1-0.

In other news, Kalvin Phillips mentions Leeds when arriving for England duty at St. George's Park