Nagatomo signs three-year Inter extension

The 29-year-old, who has previously claimed to have turned down a move to Man Utd, has now extended his current deal at San Siro and says he never considered leaving

Inter full-back Yuto Nagatomo has signed a new three-year contract extension with Roberto Mancini ‘s side.

The Japan international, who has made over 170 appearances for the San Siro side, has agreed to fresh terms which will expire on June 30, 2019.

Nagatomo has made 21 appearances in all competitions for the Nerazzurri this season.

. @YutoNagatomo5 signs contract extension until 2019! Congrats Yuto! https://t.co/8VMucHmEda #FORZAINTER #FCIM pic.twitter.com/2XnWLSQHMk
— F.C. Internazionale (@Inter_en) April 8, 2016

The 29-year-old, who joined Inter from FC Tokyo in 2011,  claimed to have turned down the chance to move to Manchester United in January , and says he never considered a move.

“I never thought of leaving. As I said before, I love Inter and I want to give my all for our goal,” he told the club’s website. “I’ve been here for five years and I’m happy, everyone treats me well.

“I feel at home. I want to thank the president, the club, [vice-president] Javier Zanetti, Roberto Mancini, the staff and the fans.”

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Head coach Mancini added on Friday: “I want to congratulate Yuto. He deserves this.”

Inter are fifth in Serie A with seven games to play, eight points adrift of Roma in the third and final Champions League qualification spot.

Murillo not seeking Inter exit

The Colombia international has stressed that he is happy with life at the Serie A side and is not thinking about a transfer

Jeison Murillo has dismissed suggestions he could leave Inter at the end of the season amid speculation linking him with Manchester United and Bayern Munich.

The Colombia international joined Inter from Granada in July 2015 and has since developed into a key player at San Siro.

Murillo has scored twice in 28 Serie A appearances this campaign and his good performances have not gone unnoticed elsewhere.

Nevertheless, the 23-year-old defender is not thinking about leaving Inter any time soon.

“I was delighted when I heard Inter were interested in me,” the centre-back told Inter Channel.

“I could have joined sooner but the situation wasn’t easy at Granada and they wanted to keep me until the end of the season. 
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“I’m pleased the fans are asking me to stay.

“I have a five-year contract and my focus must be solely on Inter and what the team have to do in order to give 100 per cent.”

Inter, having led Serie A before the mid-season break, are now fifth, eight points outside the Champions League qualification places ahead of their match away to Frosinone on Saturday.

Kondogbia: Inter still fighting for Champions League place

The French midfielder is hopeful that Roberto Mancini’s men can defy the odds and overtake Roma to claim a spot in the top four

Inter have not yet given up hope of Champions League football next season, according to midfielder Geoffrey Kondogbia.

With seven games of the Serie A season remaining, Inter are eight points behind third-placed Roma – who occupy the final Champions League qualification spot – in fifth and have a vastly inferior goal difference.

But Kondogbia says Inter will continue to fight for a top-three finish until it is no longer mathematically possible.

“Mathematically it’s not over yet and we must continue to believe in our chance of finishing third,” the France international told Corriere dello Sport.

“It’s a shame we have left points on the road that we shouldn’t have lost. We paid dearly for our errors.”
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However, while this campaign looks set to end in disappointment, Kondogbia believes Inter can challenge for the title next season.

“When I look at our squad I can see that nothing is missing to win the title,” he said.

“We have strength, quality and a great group of youngsters. Maybe we need a little bit more experience and shrewdness.”

On a personal note, the 23-year-old has dismissed suggestions he has struggled under the pressure of a huge price tag following his €38 million move from Monaco last June.

“This is a situation I know and that I’ve already experienced; when I was 21 I went to Monaco for €20m and so in July I knew what I was going to face,” he added.

“Psychologically it has never affected me.”

Kondogbia and his Inter teammates head to relegation-threatened Frosinone on Saturday as they look to close the gap on Roma.

Simeone: I imagine I'll return to Inter in the future

The Argentine is in no rush to leave the Vicente Calderon but says he hopes to get the chance to become head coach of the San Siro at some point in his managerial career

Diego Simeone says he expects to take charge of Inter in future but admits he is happy at Atletico Madrid at the moment.

The former Argentina midfielder has been linked with a number of major European clubs as a result of his impressive four years at the Vicente Calderon, though Atletico president Enrique Cerezo has said he expects him to remain in charge “for a long time”.

Simeone is in no hurry to call time on his spell in La Liga but admits he is tempted by the prospect of a return to San Siro, where he won the Uefa Cup in 1998 as a player.

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“During my career I expect to go to many places, whether it is now or in the future,” he told Sport Mediaset . “Not right now, because I am  happy here, but there will be an opportunity to return to Milan.

“It is not a dream. It is a situation I have imagined, just like how I imagined that I would return to Atletico.”

Simeone, linked with Chelsea earlier this season, has stated previously he would consider taking charge of Lazio, a club with whom he enjoyed a hugely successful playing spell.

The 45-year-old signed a new deal with Atleti last year, which expires in 2020.

Inter have complete confidence in Mancini – Zanetti

The club vice-president has made it clear that the coach’s job is safe, despite his side’s disappointing results in the second half of the season leaving them fifth in Serie A

Inter still retain complete confidence in head coach Roberto Mancini despite their shaky Serie A form, according to vice-president Javier Zanetti.

A bright start to the campaign saw the Milan side sitting top of the league by the mid-season break, but a string of disappointing results in 2016 has seen them drop to fifth, leaving them 18 points behind leaders Juventus.

Inter were beaten 2-1 by Torino at the weekend in a potentially fatal blow to their Champions League hopes, opening up an eight point gap between them and third-placed Roma.

However, Zanetti insists that Mancini will remain at San Siro, insisting that they expected to go through a rough patch at some point this term.
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“We have complete confidence in Mancini,” Zanetti told Mediaset.

“The team was more solid in the first half of the season and then started to make more mistakes. We always remained realistic, though. We knew that we would encounter some difficulties at some point.

“Everyone was angry after we lost to Torino, but we have to keep believing third place is possible, although it’s become that much trickier now.

“We just have to concentrate on picking up as many points as possible.”

Next up for Inter is a trip to struggling Frosinone on Saturday.