Maicon on verge of new Inter Milan deal

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The Independent Football

Internazionale full-back Maicon is believed to be on the verge of signing a new long-term deal with the Serie A champions, according to his agent Antonio Caliendo.

The Brazil international, who played against England in their 1-0 friendly victory in Qatar on Saturday, has moulded himself into one of the finest right-backs in the world game.

He has been an ever-present in coach Jose Mourinho's team this season to date, making 15 appearances and scoring three goals in all competition.

Speaking to Calcio News 24 about the protracted contract, Caliendo said: "It pretty much has already been done.

"Basically we have been respected and Inter have paid special attention to him."

Udinese have insisted that they have no plans to sell Switzerland midfielder Gokhan Inler, despite renewed rumours of interest from a number of clubs across the continent.

The 25-year-old is reported to be a major target for Napoli, but Udine insist that no deal is likely for a player who is under contract until the summer of 2012.

General director Sergio Gasparin told Radio Kiss Kiss: "Inler is a great player and it's logical that many clubs are interested in him. Gokhan is also an exceptional person.

"Our position is that of giving continuity to our technical project, hence, we do not want to enter talks to discuss Inler's eventual departure."

Inler's agent, Dino Lamberti, also moved to play down the links to Napoli, adding on Radio Gol: "I haven't had any contact with Napoli.

"The player has a contract with Udinese and, honestly, I would not like to do anything that could be considered disrespectful towards a serious club like Udinese.

"Inler is also highly regarded in Udine. There is even a fan club in his honour that boasts 450 members."

Meanwhile, AC Milan superstar Ronaldinho is adamant that compatriot Leonardo is proving his worth in the managerial hot-seat following a difficult start in charge at the San Siro.

Ronaldinho believes his coach is finding the best in him again after his career looked to have ground to a halt and he insists he is now playing with much more freedom with the Rossoneri.

He said: "I have clicked with Leonardo and I'm happy, although from time to time he takes me off before the end of matches.

"Working with him is stimulating and Leo is an enthusiast by nature and conveys his energy to us.

"He is a prepared tactician who will prove the club made the right choice in hiring him."

Napoli striker Fabio Quagliarella is hoping to help the club rocket up the Serie A table and earn a place in the fans' hearts.

Since making the move to his beloved hometown club from Udinese in the summer, the frontman wants to help the Vesuviani challenge for honours come the end of the season.

Speaking to Corriere dello Sport, he said: "Returning home after 13 years was a dream come true.

"Now I hope to score plenty of goals and give much satisfaction to our fans.

"We are trying to reach important targets."