According to a number of reports in Italy, Dinamo Zagreb is sending 22-year-old defensive midfielder Marcelo Brozovic to Inter on what initially will be a loan but is in essence a permanent transfer.
David Amoyal, a reporter for Italian media powerhouse Gianluca di Marzio’s network, is confirming Brozovic’s move to be an 18-month loan costing Inter around $3.5 million through next summer, and the loan has a mandatory buy clause for that time costing another $5.5 million. All that’s left is a medical and signatures, with Brozovic’s eventually permanent deal running through summer of 2019.
The midfielder has three goals and six assists in 26 matches across all competitions this season for Zagreb, including decent time in the Europa League. In six Europa League matches, Brozovic put together a modest 83% pass completion rate, created nine chances, scored a goal, and completed an impressive 16/28 take-ons. Statistics are not readily available from the Croatian league, but he’s been dubbed the “Croatian Xavi” by many, quite high praise, although those names and comparisons seem to be handed out endlessly these days.
These two teams did a similar deal for 20-year-old Croatian Mateo Kovacic last January, a deal which has worked out well for Inter. Costing Inter a rumored $12 million, the young attacking midfielder has gone on to become a force in the Serie A attack, and has earned himself links to teams like Manchester United in the process. Kovacic and Brozovic have played together on the Croatian national team, with each on Croatia’s 2014 World Cup roster, although neither played a highly significant role.
Inter has gone a long way towards fixing its broken season, and strengthening its attacking power has been a priority this winter, the first transfer window with Roberto Mancini in charge. Lukas Podolski has come in and seen significant playing time immediately.
Mancini also seems to be stockpiling defensive midfielders. It would appear Yann M’Villa’s time short time in Serie A would be up, with Brozovic expected to overtake him in the squad, and possibly even start over Serbian Zdravko Kuzmanovic who is rumored to be on his way out. It would follow that Gary Medel and Fredy Guarin also would see some decreased playing time should Brozovic slide straight into the XI.