Inter vice-president Javier Zanetti has admitted that the club, crowned Serie A champions last Sunday, are in “serious financial problems”.
I Nerazzurri secured their first title since 2010 after Atalanta failed to beat Sassuolo, ending Juventus’ decade-long stranglehold of Serie A.
But for all of their success on the field under Antonio Conte, Inter’s off-field financial problems have been well documented. In fact, things are so bad at the club that the club’s owners, Suning Holdings Group, have previously considered selling – having already operations at other clubs in China.
Now, quoted by Spanish publication AS, Zanetti has conceded that the club’s dire financial situation has worsened during the global coronavirus pandemic, which has prevented the club – like all others around Europe – from receiving gate money from paying supporters.
“It’s true that the club could’ve been sold mid-season. ‘We were going through serious financial problems, even if we weren’t the only ones in such a difficult moment.
“I saw that as a club we can still improve. The coach has done something extraordinary over two years, now it’s up to us to improve the internal mechanism and aspire to something more.
“The financial problems remain and it could take a couple of years to rediscover that balance. We need people back in the stadium to make the sponsors happy. Basically, a return to normality.”
Because of Inter’s poor financial position, there is no guarantee that 51-year-old Conte will still be in charge at San Siro next season. The former Chelsea boss is the highest paid manager in Serie A, and he’s tenuously been linked with the vacant Tottenham Hotspur job.
That move looks unlikely at this stage, given his Stamford Bridge connections, but it’s likely Inter will need to generate extra income by shedding some high earners of their wage bill. Romelu Lukaku is the star attraction likely to attract the most interest, though it’s been mooted that he’s the one player I Nerazzurri don’t want to sell at any price.
Inter were, of course, one of the 12 clubs who had committed to the now defunct Super League project, which would have been a great source of income for the club had fan backlash not scuppered the proposal.