Nicolo Zaniolo ‘had a late change of heart on Bournemouth move and DID want to join them’ – despite refusing to meet with club officials last week – but the Cherries passed on the Roma star because they had ‘spent enough money’
- Roma outcast Nicolo Zaniolo left Roma furious by snubbing Bournemouth
- The winger refused to meet Cherries officials who had flown in to meet for talks
- Zaniolo reportedly changed his mind on deadline day but left it too late
Roma outcast Nicolo Zaniolo reportedly changed his mind on joining Bournemouth on deadline day – despite brutally snubbing them last week – but left it too late, with the Cherries rejecting the move after ‘spending enough money’.
Zaniolo had been targeted by a number of clubs this month after making it clear he wanted to leave Jose Mourinho’s side, with the Portuguese manager claiming the player had refused to train at the club.
Despite being linked with Tottenham and AC Milan, the 23-year-old was approached by the Cherries, who sent representatives out to Italy to hold talks over a move.
Roma outcast Nicolo Zaniolo wanted a late Bournemouth move – despite snubbing them last week – but the Cherries reportedly passed on the deal
However, despite offering £26.4million – matching Roma’s asking price – and a contract of around £4.4m-a-year, Zaniolo refused to meet the delegation, infuriating his club.
Italian journalist Gianluca Di Marzio has claimed Zaniolo ended up deciding to join Bournemouth on deadline day – with Roma even arranging a private jet to conclude the deal – before the Cherries passed on the deal.
‘Zaniolo didn’t want to speak the Bournemouth sporting director who came to Roma and had discussions with the agent,’ the report said.
Bournemouth – managed by Gary O’Neil – are said to have declined because they had ‘already spent enough money’ following six January additions
‘But last night he decided to say yes to Bournemouth and spoke to them this morning. The private flight was ready. But in the afternoon the owner said no to the deal as they’ve spent enough money.’
Bournemouth went on to sign Sassuolo midfielder Hamed Traore instead, as well as Dynamo Kiev defender Illia Zabarnyi.
The pair join six signings in total at the Vitality this month, including forwards Dango Ouattara and Antoine Semenyo, keeper Darren Randolph and defender Matias Vina.
Leeds United were also linked with Zaniolo, but the Whites ended up signing defenders Diogo Monteiro on deadline day, with the winger now forced to stay at Roma for the rest of the season at least.
The Italy international will now be forced to stay with Roma until at least the end of the season
But he faces an awkward reunion with Mourinho having angered his manager by refusing to train.
‘He told me, the club and his teammates that he doesn’t want to play for Roma,’ Mourinho said to Gianluca Di Marzio.
‘He said he doesn’t want to go back to playing with the team, that he doesn’t want to train with the team.’
Zaniolo’s debacle also reportedly saw angry club ultras arrive at his property after being enraged by his conduct, with the player forced to call the police.
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