In-demand Isco to pen new deal
In-demand Malaga starlet Isco looks set to sign a new deal at his current club, but even still may not remain on the Costa del Sol for much longer.
Sparkling displays for Malaga in his first Champions League campaign have brought interest in the highly-rated player from Premier League giants Chelsea and Manchester City.
Pep Guardiola's future club Bayern Munich have also been mentioned, while Tottenham Hotspur were reportedly close to meeting the €20 million release clause in his current contract last summer.
Speaking at Wednesday’s unveiling of Diego Lugano, signed this week on loan from Paris Saint Germain, Malaga sporting director Mario Husillos said he would soon be back to announce news of a new deal for Isco.
"Very soon we will be here presenting Isco's new contract," Husillos said. "It is not signed yet, but soon we will be here again. It is practically finished."
With Malaga's financial situation still unclear, it has been suggested that the reason for a new deal is to raise the player's release clause to around €40 million, to ensure cash-strapped Malaga make as much as possible from his sale. Husillos' comments look unlikely to dampen that talk.
"In football it is misleading to speak about anything as definitive," he said. "The idea of the club, and what Isco himself has said, is that he will renew his contract. Then life can take many paths. That is the best message the club can give about the subject."
Pressed on the matter, Husillos accepted that a player such as Isco, 20, was unlikely to spend his whole career at Malaga.
"Isco has made an important step forward, he is a great player who is wanted everywhere," he said. "He plays for the Spanish national team. The idea is to enjoy him for as long as we can at Malaga. Everyone wants to improve and if he keeps growing like this it is understandable for him to go to a huge European club."
Lugano's arrival at Malaga followed that of Chelsea youngster Lucas Piazon, also on loan, earlier this month. Former Boca Juniors and Malaga striker Husillos said he could not rule out further business - in or out - before the January transfer window shuts.
"While the market is open, our obligation is to be aware of any situation," he said. "I have to say there are some possibilities. We are happy that we have covered our initial objectives, but we remain in the market.
"Nothing is discarded. All clubs buy and sell players. We do that too, we sell if it makes sense. In the summer five top quality players left, and others came which cost less but lowered the level of the team. That is where we are."