The Argentine forward has been widely tipped to join his international team-mate, Lionel Messi, in Camp Nou after the transfer window re-opens.

With Icardi departing in 2019, however, and new coach Antonio Conte switches to 2 beginning centre-forwards, he’s gone from strength to strength partnering Romelu Lukaku, scoring 16 goals in 31 appearances in all competitions in 2019-20 prior to the year was halted as a result of coronavirus pandemic.

That promise hasn’t gone unnoticed, with Barca allegedly desperate to pair him with global team-mate Lionel Messi this summer.

However, Zanetti, who played a huge role in unearthing the child’s talent, would love to see him star at San Siro for several years to come.

“I am enormously happy to be speaking about Lautaro.

“Talking to [former Inter participant and Racing director of soccer ] Diego Milito we noticed he could develop into a great player. He is only 22 and a fixture at the Argentina team.

“I see him train each week in Appiano with his team-mates. He seems happy to me and I hope he stays quite a long time. In addition to the other lads who’ve grown a lot, he represents a fantastic advantage for our team.”

As a participant Zanetti racked up more than 800 looks for Inter during nearly two decades in the Nerazzurri; a spell which saw him play against some of the world’s most lethal attackers.

When asked who had been the best, he singled out former Arsenal and Barcelona star Thierry Henry because of his most fearsome competition and had glowing praise for two fellow South Americans.

“Henry had plenty of power and a great deal of speed, he was hard to mark,” he added. “My very best team-mate? Ronaldo. O Fenomeno had great ability, huge quality. I was also fortunate enough to play alongside Messi from the national team and I believe they were the best.”