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MADRID - European champions Barcelona are confident about closing a complex deal with Inter Milan to swap Samuel Eto'o for Zlatan Ibrahimovic within the next few days.
Spanish and Italian media reported on Thurday that Barca president Joan Laporta struck a deal with Inter owner Massimo Moratti to pay Inter about R452million) for Ibrahimovic, plus Eto'o and a year's loan of Alexander Hleb.
The deal has still not been officially announced because the details of the new contracts of Eto'o and Ibrahimovic need to be sorted out.
Catalan daily Sport claimed yesterday that Jose Maria Mesalles, Eto'o's agent, will work out the details with Inter Milan "within a couple of days" and that Jose Mourinho - coach of the Italian champions - "is very keen" to have Eto'o in his squad as soon as possible.
Laporta is quoted in yesterday's Spanish newspapers as saying that the deal will go ahead "with or without Eto'o". Laporta said the deal "resolves a situation of conflict ", referring to the fact that Barca coach Josep Guardiola is desperate to have Ibrahimovic - and to get rid of Eto'o. - Sapa-DPA