AC Milan have reportedly responded to speculation over M’Baye Niang’s future, with West Ham United linked, by insisting that the winger is unsellable.
According to La Gazzetta dello Sport, rumours on Friday suggested that the Hammers were ready to make a move for the Frenchman in the January transfer window.
However, the Rossoneri have responded by insisting that he isn’t for sale, as they can ill-afford to lose another attacker with Luiz Adriano set to secure a move to Spartak Moscow this month.
Nevertheless, with Vincenzo Montella’s hands tied in the transfer market given the club’s takeover will not be completed until March, they will have to sell first in order to raise transfer funds.
Of the players that would command significant fees, Niang would arguably be sacrificed by many supporters, as he has endured a difficult season thus far.
With just three goals and three assists in 16 appearances for Milan so far this year, frustration has been building in recent weeks with the club’s supporters even jeering the forward at times.
Those who defend him will argue that he’s still young at 22 and has plenty of time to improve and develop his game. In contrast, his detractors have been arguing the same thing for several years now and he hasn’t shown that he is getting better on a consistent basis.
Whether it’s losing possession by running into trouble or poor decision-making in the final third, Niang looks bereft of confidence at the moment as he hasn’t matured in the way many hoped. Further, it’s difficult to see what it will take for him to snap out of it and prove that he is worthy of a regular place in Montella’s line-up.
The Italian tactician seemingly has unshakable faith in him, and it looks as though he’ll have another six months at least working with him to try and get the best out of him to silence his critics.