Wesley Sneijder will continue to be the heartbeat of Inter Milan for years to come after signing a new deal with last year’s treble winners until 2015.
The Dutch playmaker’s original deal was set to expire in 2013 and a number of Europe’s top clubs were considering testing Inter’s resolve by submitting a big-money bid.
However, Sneijder has confirmed his love for the Italian giants by extending his contract for a further two years with the aim of bringing more success to last season’s Champions League, Serie A and Coppa Italia winners.
President Massimo Moratti said: “Sneijder became a key player for Inter last season and will be this year, and for many years to come.”
Inter have not made the greatest start to the season under the guidance of new boss Rafa Benitez and this was believed to be partly the reason for Sneijder weighing up where to play his football in the future.
They are still the 6/5 favourites to win Serie A despite currently sitting third in the table after eight games, four points behind leaders Lazio.
Sneijder’s creative abilities will be pivotal for Inter if they are to come close to repeating last season’s results, although Benitez will also want the Dutchman to find his form in front of goal.
The 26-year-old scored five times for Holland at the World Cup when used in an advanced midfield position, yet is still to score in Serie A in his seven starts.
Sneijder’s impressive World Cup in helping Holland to reach the final, alongside his treble-winning domestic campaign has installed him as the likely winner of the Ballon D’Or.
He is the 7/4 favourite to win the Ballon d’Or, with Spanish and Barcelona central midfield duo Xavi and Andres Iniesta 3/1 to claim the accolade.
Lionel Messi is 7/1 to win the Ballon d’Or for the second year in succession. See the full Ballon d’Or winners betting odds market.