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Paolo Maldini offers update on Milan duo amid contract standoff

The legendary defender revealed the current state of talks


AC Milan chief executive Paolo Maldini has confirmed that talks are underway to keep Rafael Leao at San Siro beyond his current contract expiring in 2024 as they fight to keep the Portuguese starlet with the Rossoneri amid interest from clubs around Europe.

The 23-year-old was a key part of the Rossoneri’s title-winning side last season, and picked up the division’s most valuable player award. He has registered seven goals and six assists in 16 Serie A outings so far this campaign.

And, despite interest from Chelsea last summer, Leao stayed put, with Maldini suggesting that he has now decided that he would like to remain in Italy beyond his current deal.

“We are in talks to extend Leão contract”, he explained. “We will try to get it done, it seems we’re now on the same page. It seems he wants to stay”

“We want to try to get it sealed as soon as possible, we are on it discussing with Rafa”

Meanwhile, the legendary defender also confirmed that a new deal for teammate Ismael Bennacer would be completed by the end of the week, with the Algerian midfielder’s current contract set to expire in 2024.

“We are gonna complete the new deal of Ismael Bennacer in the next 24-36 hours”, the Milan chief confirmed.

The deal, which will see the former Arsenal academy man rewarded with a pay rise for his service to the San Siro outfit, will also reportedly keep the 50m euro release clause that is already written into his current deal.

But with the 25-year-old now one of the best in his position across world football, that clause could be activated sooner than initially anticipated amid reported interest from both Arsenal and Liverpool.

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