A crucial piece to Internazionale's European title has been allowed to follow their departed coach to Madrid, with Brazilian Maicon set for the Santiago Bernabeu on a €28 million dollar trasnfer, according to Italy's Corriere della Sera. The right back will join former coach José Mourinho on a deal reported to pay €7 million per season.
Maicon had been linked with a move to Spain since the end of Inter Milan's treble-winning season. The 29-year-old, who celebrated a birthday on Monday, had been intent to follow the departed Mourinho, though he eventually relaxed his position, claiming he would be content to play for either team.
Today, Inter confirmed the sale in what reports say could be a precursor to the Nerazzurri pursuit of Javier Mascherano.
Maicon finished his Internazionale career having won the league's title each season since his 2006 move from Monaco. In 169 all-competition appearances for Inter Milan, Maicon scored 16 goals.
In this summer's World Cup, Maicon scored one of the event's most memorable goals, opening the scoring against North Korea by bending a ball into the fall net from near the endline, to the right of goal.
Now, the Brazilian moves to Madrid, where Mourinho already has Spainish international Sergio Ramos at right back. The acquisition of Maicon could signal a move to the middle for the 24-year-cold defender, who moved inside at times last season when Los Merengues dealt with injury issues.
Central defense, however, is no less crowded for Mourinho, who could see Ramos battling for time with Pepe, Eric Albiol, and Ezequiel Garay.