Inter Milan chief executive officer Giuseppe Marotta has responded to Wanda Nara's recent comments regarding the future of her husband, Mauro Icardi, by saying no-one at the club told the player to stay.
Icardi, 26, has been linked with the Inter exit since entering a contract stand-off with the club earlier this year. Nara holds a regular spot on television programme Tiki Taka (h/t Goal's Sean Wilson) and recently hinted it may have been "the one who runs the club" who told her husband to remain.
However, Marotta spoke to DAZN (h/t Wilson) and issued a swift response to those comments, appearing to suggest the two parties might still part ways this summer:
"We greeted Wanda Nara's comments with a pinch of irritation, both for the timing and the method.
"I can also categorically deny that someone at the club told Icardi to stay at Inter, especially not President Steven Zhang.
"The strategy Inter have taken is precise and we communicated it clearly in the right time-frame. We'll continue like this to the end and nobody at Inter can change this common approach that is shared by everyone."
The Serie A transfer window closes on the evening of 2 September, giving the Nerazzurri a little less than one week to find an appropriate destination for the player should they decide to sell.
Nara added manager Antonio Conte "is not letting [Icardi] play" for the time being but that she felt her partner "will remain at Inter."
She also noted the couple's links in Naples—suggesting a move to Napoli could be on the cards—but said the striker is committed to Inter, per Goal:
Icardi has two years remaining on his current contract and boasts a prolific goal return at the club—124 goals in 219 appearances—but there's been a lack of concrete interest despite rumours of a split this summer.
Inter also appeared to suggest the player could be set to remain at the San Siro after shirt numbers were distributed this season:
The Nerazzurri opened their league campaign with a 4-0 demolition of the promoted outfit, with Lukaku maintaining his streak of career debut strikes:
FIFA World Cup @FIFAWorldCup
🇧🇪 Impressive stat from 2018 #WorldCup adidas Bronze Boot winner @RomeluLukaku9 ⤵️ 🏎 The @BelRedDevils FWD has scored on his league debut for each of his last 4 clubs: @Inter_en v Lecce ⚽ Man Utd v West Ham ⚽⚽ Everton v West Ham ⚽ West Brom v Liverpool ⚽ https://t.co/3ixU4Ll9gb
His success in front of goal will help make up for the absence of Icardi, who has netted 72 goals in the past three seasons at Inter.
Inter could find themselves stuck with the striker until at least the January transfer window should they fail to sanction a sale this summer, even with Marotta seemingly open to the player leaving in the coming days.