Inter Milan’s Croatian midfielder Mateo Kovacic is set to join Premier League side Liverpool, after the two clubs agreed a transfer fee of €22 million, plus €2 million in potential add-ons.
Born in Linz, Austria, after his parents had moved there from Bosnia, the versatile midfielder started playing for local side LASK Linz at the age of just six and remained at the club until he turned 13, when his parents moved to Croatian capital Zagreb, where he joined local giants Dinamo Zagreb. At this stage in his life, Kovacic had already been spotted by a number of big clubs, including Ajax and Bayern Munich. Aged just 16, he made his senior debut at Dinamo and ended up accumulating 73 appearances and nine goals for the Croatian club.
In January 2013, Italian giants Inter came calling and paid a total €15 million for Kovacic’s services. The midfielder made an immediate impact and racked up 13 Serie A appearances in the second half of the season. The Croatian continued to impress in the following two seasons and can now look back at 97 total appearances and eight goals for Inter. At 21 years of age, Liverpool will be getting a player that has already racked up a total of 170 senior appearances.
Kovacic is incredibly talented and could complement the likes of Henderson and Can to such an extent, that Steven Gerrard’s departure may no longer be such a great talking point. With James Milner and Danny Ings already signed up, Liverpool continue their intelligent recruitment and have just added another top quality player for arguably little money.