Inter summer signing Geoffrey Kondogbia hopes to “tear things up” like Zinedine Zidane as a Serie A player.
The midfielder, 22, broke into the global football consciousness in 2014-15 with a starring season for Monaco, who finished third in Ligue 1 and reached the Champions League quarter-finals.
Kondogbia, who cost the Nerazzurri €40 million, is excited by the opportunity to play in Italy having witnessed the development of Paul Pogba at Juventus and noting the effect the league had on the career of Zidane, who later became an icon at Real Madrid and a World Cup winner with France.
“A lot of players played in Italy then tore things up in other leagues like Zidane or Thierry Henry,” the France international told L’Equipe. “If you take Pogba, for example, you can see that if you move elsewhere then you’ll adapt.
“I also spoke to Evra, though not specifically regarding Inter. His opinion was very important to me, he made me realise that once you’ve tried Serie A nothing will be more impressive.
“He also told me that the league would help me to improve in every sense. The training is harder in Italy and as a result everything else becomes easier.”
Kondogbia was widely believed to be on the verge of joining AC Milan before choosing their arch-rivals, but the new Inter player once again attacked claims he reneged on a deal and says he turned down more money to link up with Roberto Mancini’s men.
“Yes, the truth is that I spoke to Milan, but never in my life have I said yes to Milan CEO Adriano Galliani,” Kondogbia said when asked about the rumours regarding his San Siro swap.
“Milan offered me more, but Mancini made the difference, he told me what I wanted to hear. The two clubs know what happened, and they know what they offered me.
“Milan know that their offer was better financially, but I didn’t make my choice based on that.”