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Inter Milan news: Mauro Icardi refuses to play after being stripped of the captaincy

1.14K   //    14 Feb 2019, 04:00 IST

Mauro Icardi has been stripped of the captaincy amid contract disputes
Mauro Icardi has been stripped of the captaincy amid contract disputes

What's the news?

Inter Milan's striker Mauro Icardi has refused to take part in Inter Milan's Europa League tie against Rapid Wein after being stripped of the captaincy by the club. Goalkeeper Samir Handanović has been named as the new club captain.

In case you didn't know...

Mauro Icardi joined Inter Milan from Sampordia in 2013 and scored 116 goals in 198 games for the I Nerazzurri thus far. He finished as the club's top scorer in the last three seasons and was the recipient of Serie A Footballer of the Season 2018 accolade.

He is in a good form this season as well and registered nine goals and two assists in 20 Serie A games thus far this campaign.

However, his current contract with the club will expire in 2021 and he is reportedly refusing to sign a new contract. He was linked with a move away from the San Siro in the recent months and could finally leave the club at the end of the current season.

The heart of the matter

Inter head coach Luciano Spalletti reveals that Mauro Icardi refuses to travel with the team to play against Rapid Wien in the Europa League.

He said (via independent): "The decision to remove the captaincy from Icardi was difficult and painful, absolutely shared by all the club members and taken for the good of Inter.

"He was called up for Vienna but he did not want to be there. Things around him have disturbed him and the team he captained. Now we have to focus all our attention on Thursday's game.” added the manager.

What's next?

Inter Milan are scheduled to face Rapid Wien in the Europa League later today before squaring off against Sampdoria FC at the San Siro Stadium in the league on February 17.