Inter Milan coach Luciano Spalletti conceded Sunday he could be powerless to stop Mauro Icardi from being poached by a major European club, despite assurances from the Argentinian star that he is going nowhere.
The 25-year-old Inter captain – who has a 110 million euro ($128 million dollars) release clause in his contract – has been linked with top clubs including Champions League winners Real Madrid.
"I've spoken with Mauro several times and he sent very precise signals," Spalletti told Sky Sports Italia.
"He's happy at Inter and wants to stay, but then there are clubs which, if they decide to take a player, you could have been saying 'I won't leave here' the day before, then the next day they take you and in the end you're happy to go, even though the previous day you were thinking very differently.
"We have to be ready for anything, but for now there are no signals and no doubts about what he wants."
Icardi joined Inter in 2013 from Sampdoria and this season scored 29 Serie A goals including last week's crunch clash when Inter pipped Lazio to a Champions League place.
Icardi's wife and agent Wanda Nara said during the week he was "wanted by the three best teams in the world" who were ready to pay the release clause but "his priority is Inter".
Despite being the joint top scorer in Serie A this season Icardi has been overlooked by Argentina in their World Cup squad.