Roberto Mancini has hinted that Xherdan Shaqiri may need to be off-loaded by Inter in order to balance his squad out ahead of the Serie A season.

The arrival of Geoffrey Kondogbia has strengthened the competition for places at Inter after a disappointing 2014-15 campaign, and Mancini says some players may need to depart to offset the new arrivals.

Shaqiri has been linked with Stoke City and Wolfsburg during the close-season, but neither switch has come to fruition, although Mancini’s latest comments could mean the Switzerland international is poised to leave San Siro. 

“He [Shaqiri] didn’t play because he is tired,” Mancini told Mediaset after Inter’s 4-3 friendly win over Stuttgart Kickers on Saturday.

“Unfortunately, as we need to limit the squad to 25 payers, for those we sign someone else has to leave.

“I understand it is very difficult to leave Inter, but we have to sacrifice a few of them.”

Meanwhile, Mancini was not impressed with Inter’s second-half display against German third-tier side Kickers, who battled back from 4-0 down to almost spring a surprise. 

He added: “I saw some good things. I was satisfied with the first half, albeit with some mistakes that were no doubt down to fatigue.

“The second half, however, did not impress me.”

Sat 11 July, 2015