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Exclusive: Inter Milan Eye Ambitious Raid For £40m Ligue 1 Pair

New owner looks to bring two of France’s biggest names to Inter.

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New Inter Milan owner Erick Thohir is set to launch an ambitious double bid for two of Ligue 1’s most exciting young talents this January in a deal worth around £40m, CaughtOffside understands.

The Serie A giants’ reputation as a force in European football has faded somewhat in recent years with some disappointing results following the departure of charismatic and highly successful manager Jose Mourinho, though they will be looking to put themselves back on the map this season with some big-money purchases.

Many rumours have surfaced following the investment from Indonesian businessman Thohir, and it has now emerged that Lyon’s Clement Grenier and Montpellier’s Remy Cabella are among Inter’s targets for when the transfer window re-opens at the turn of the year.

Grenier and Cabella are both similarly skillful attacking midfielders and are rated as the best prospects coming out of French football at the moment with their fantastic displays in Ligue 1.

The two players, aged 22 and 23 respectively, look set to become among the finest in the world in their position over the next few years, and Inter are determined to beat off some fierce competition to sign them both as they look to build a side capable of challenging for the title in Serie A and to put themselves among the contenders for the Champions League again, a competition they have failed to make an impact in and even qualify for on occasion since winning it in 2010.

Grenier has been at Lyon for his whole career so far, but looks increasingly likely to move on to bigger things after the likes of Arsenal, Liverpool and Juventus targeted him during the summer. With 3 goals and 3 assists already this season, he has now caught the eye of Inter as well, who feel they may be able to sign him for around £22m.

Cabella, meanwhile, is another homegrown talent of his club, though he currently looks like something of a big fish in a small pond at Montpellier and is attracting interest from big clubs such as Manchester United, who have stepped up their interest of late as they seek a new playmaker for their team.

It has recently emerged that the attacker, hailed by some as the ‘new Zinedine Zidane’, could be available for around £15m this January, which has alerted Arsenal as well, though Inter will look to beat interested parties from the Premier League to his signature by making an £18m offer.

Beating so many big clubs to these two top talents would represent a big statement of intent from Inter, and will likely not be the only major purchases by the Italians this January, with the likes of Karim Benzema, Edin Dzeko, Daniel Agger and Thomas Vermaelen also mentioned as several other high-profile targets.

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