Milan: Former Roma coach Luciano Spalletti said on Tuesday that he has agreed to take over at Inter Milan as he flew to China to meet the Serie A club's owners ahead of his imminent appointment.
Spalletti, who led Roma to runners-up spot behind Juventus in Serie A last week, is expected to be officially named as the successor to sacked Stefano Pioli in the coming days.
The 58-year-old Italian told media at Milan's Malpensa airport he had "shaken hands" on a deal with Inter and would soon put pen to paper on what is expected to be a three-year contract.
"I'm happy to be the coach of Inter," Spalletti said.
"The signature? Everything's in order. We've done things the old fashioned way and shaken hands on it."
In his second spell in charge of Roma, Spalletti failed to break the Serie A stranglehold of northern rivals Juventus, who finished four points ahead for a record sixth consecutive Scudetto.
But the former Zenit St Petersburg coach did secure a place in the group stages of the Champions League, a goal Inter will be hoping he can match with them next season.
Inter — Italy's last Champions League winners in 2010 — failed in their bid to secure European football next season after another roller coaster campaign that saw Pioli replace sacked Dutchman Frank De Boer after less than three months in charge.
They finished seventh, one point behind city rivals AC Milan and just out of the Europa League places, although Italy's quota of Champions League places will be increased to four from 2018.
Travelling to China with Spalletti was Inter sporting director Piero Ausilio, who said the club had not spoken to other coaches as they sought a replacement for Pioli.
"We never spoke (to any)," said Ausilio.
"The only thing we thought about was bringing Spalletti to Inter. Nothing's official yet, but it's going in that direction."
Published Date: Jun 06, 2017 06:03 pm | Updated Date: Jun 06, 2017 06:03 pm