Zenit St. Petersburg’s Argentine revolution looks set to continue with Independiente winger Emiliano Rigoni the latest target for the Russian club.
The 24-year-old was one of the stars of the Primera last season, scoring eleven goals as Independiente came agonisingly close to a Copa Libertadores return. However, his outstanding form under Ariel Holan has attracted interest and after weeks of speculation from Europe, Zenit have submitted a bid that could rise to €9 million.
A lightening quick, two-footed forward with an eye for goal, the initial €8 million that Zenit have offered would be a bargain in what is an inflated transfer window.
Independiente are reluctant to agree to any deal until they have purchased the remaining 50% of Rigoni’s ownership from previous club Belgrano. Negotiations over this have been ongoing but whether the player and his agent will want to wait and jeopardize a lucrative transfer abroad remains to be seen.
Understandably Independiente manager Ariel Holan is loath to see the most important piece of his attack sold but did say that he values Rigoni above the reported amount offered.
“I think he is a very complete player for modern football and for me is worth more than €10 million,” Holan told TyC Sports.
— C. A. Independiente (@Independiente) July 18, 2017
Whether Independiente lose Rigoni or not, preparation for next season is well under way and Venezuelan defender Fernando Amorebieta was confirmed as the latest reinforcement on Tuesday.
The 32-year-old brings a wealth of experience to El Rojo’s youthful defence and after playing 27 times in La Liga for Sporting Gijón last season should still have plenty to offer in Argentina.
Amorebieta joins Jonás Gutiérrez through the door at the Estadio Libertadores de América but Holan still eyes a couple more deals before the Copa Sudamericana second leg against Deportes Iquique on August 2nd.
The transfer of Bolivian international Alejandro Chumacero had looked dead in the water when the 26-year-old said that he would remain with The Strongest but after a change of heart it now looks as though the midfielder will be arriving in Avellaneda after a Copa Libertadores clash with Lanús.
“We only need adjustments because we had a great second half of the season,” Holan insisted.
“We would like to have two players per position so another striker and an alternative in central midfield.”
With this in mind, El Rojo have also tabled bids for Boca Juniors forward Nazareno Solís and Argentinos Juniors number five Esteban Rolón.