Inter Milan director Beppe Marotta has confirmed Diego Godin is closing in on a move to Italy, telling reporters an official announcement could arrive soon.
Speaking to Sky Sport Italia (h/t Football Italia) ahead of Thursday's UEFA Europa League tussle with Rapid Wien, the former Juventus director also expressed his delight at Godin's goal for Atletico Madrid against his former club on Wednesday: "I am happy; we are at a very advanced stage in negotiations, and it was nice to see Godin score yesterday. As for the rest, let's just say that I am very optimistic and believe that we'll be able to make an official announcement pretty soon."
Inter are Juventus' mortal enemies, and the fans rejoiced at Godin's Champions League goal that put their rivals in a deep hole:
The Uruguayan put the final 2-0 score on the board on Wednesday, handing Atletico a massive advantage ahead of the second leg. The Spaniards will travel to Turin for the return leg on March 12.
Godin has been with Atletico since 2010, emerging as one of the world's best defenders in the last few years. At age 33 he remains remarkably consistent and did a fantastic job of shutting down Cristiano Ronaldo on Wednesday.
He's one of the fans' favourites players and ranks among the club's most loyal servants—something he underlined after his goal:
Seeing him in another shirt will be an odd sight, and the timing of Marotta's announcement may not sit well with fans of the Rojiblancos who are still celebrating their big win.
He won't be the first veteran defender to move from Atletico to Inter, as former central partner Miranda joined the Nerazzurri in 2015. The Brazilian has made eight starts in Serie A this season, and Godin's arrival won't be good news for his playing time.
In Milan Skriniar and Stefan de Vrij, Inter already have two class options at centre-back, but that won't stop them from signing Godin as a free agent. Catalan newspaper Sport linked the former to Real Madrid and Barcelona earlier this season, and with Godin in the fold, his exit may be more likely.