Inter Milan's Rafa Benitez mulling over shock bid for Aston Villa youngster Gary Gardner

08 September 2010 12:48
Bright future: 18-year-old midfielder Gary Gardner

Inter Milan have been linked with a shock move for Aston Villa prodigy Gary Gardner - the 18-year-old brother of Birmingham midfielder Craig.

Rafa Benitez trawled England for young talent towards the end of his reign at Liverpool - signing Jonjo Shelvey and Raheem Sterling among others - and it appears the Spaniard has passed on knowledge to his new employers.

Gardner is on his way back from a serious knee injury but has previously shown huge promise at England youth level, playing alongside Arsenal's Jack Wilshere in midfield.

Inter have also tracked Wilshere for more than two years, but know that prising the starlet from the Emirates Stadium will be impossible while Arsene Wenger continues to give him first-team opportunities.

While Gardner is a long-term target, Benitez has asked for new recruits when the transfer window opens in January.

Bolton defender Gary Cahill is the latest to be linked with a move to the San Siro, while Gareth Bale, Lucas Leiva and former Manchester United striker Diego Forlan are also in their sights.

On the lookout: Inter Milan boss Rafa Benitez wants to buy in January

Bale is very highly regarded in Italy, with Juventus and AC Milan also previously showing an interest, but Harry Redknapp has no intention of selling the 21-year-old Wales international.

Lucas may be more realistic as the 23-year-old Brazil midfielder is unsure of his future, but approaches in the summer were knocked back.

Everton's Leighton Baines has been mentioned as a surprise alternative to Bale for filling Inter's problem left back position.

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Source: Daily_Mail