Any chance for Manchester United's Anthony Martial to move to Inter on loan this season has been ended after the club reportedly demanded a swap deal for Ivan Perisic.
Martial has fallen out of favour with United boss Jose Mourinho and is struggling to get game time, but the club hierarchy are still said to be unwilling to let the 22-year-old leave.
Having joined the club in September 2015, Martial has gone on to make 138 appearances in all competitions and score 36 times, but has so far managed just two appearances this season.
The Mirror reports that Mourinho wants to bring a replacement in for Martial before he allows the Frenchman to leave United, with World Cup finalist Perisic identified as the number one choice. However, due to ongoing disagreements with Ed Woodward, it is unlikely a move for the ageing Croatian would be sanctioned.
Martial didnt exactly grab his opportunity with both hands but a bit harsh to blame him, it was a poor & needless challenge from Matic. Martials body language really isn't helping his cause as well. He just doesn't look up for the fight to get a start.— Ste Bev (@stebevan) September 16, 2018
Rapidly approaching 30 years of age, Perisic will not be viewed as having as long-term a potential as someone like Martial could offer.
Inter have little reason to let the Croatian star leave, either.
He has already provided crucial goals for the club in Serie A this season and is seen as one of head coach Luciano Spalletti's crown jewels. As such, even as just a temporary move, it would be unlikely the Italian club would be willing to trade away their key man.
Considering Inter have found themselves falling behind league leaders Juventus already, and want to bolster their attacking line-up - letting Perisic leave would certainly undermine their aspirations going forwards.
Spalletti is thought to be a big fan of former Monaco star Martial, and was very interested in the possibility of bringing the Frenchman in on loan in January - despite already having Monaco's Keita Balde on loan in a similar position - but with the demand of getting Perisic in return makes any chance of a deal looking all but over.