FOOTBALL: Socceroos stopper Trent Sainsbury has joined Italian giants Inter Milan on loan for the rest of the season.
Sainsbury, 25, has been tracked for several months by Inter boss Stefano Pioli, who has transformed the side since replacing Frank de Boer last October.
Inter shares the same owners as Sainsbury's Chinese club Jiangsu Suning and struck a deal on the last day of the January transfer window.
Sainsbury may be called into the squad for Monday morning's (AEST) clash with Serie A leader Juventus after Brazilian Joao Miranda was sent off in Wednesday morning's Coppa Italia clash with Lazio.
The former Central Coast and PEC Zwolle stopper is competing against Colombian Jeison Murillo and Chilean Gary Medel, who Sainsbury will face with the Socceroos in June's Confederations Cup.
Inter is pushing hard for a Champions League berth, climbing from 12th to fourth and taking 25 points from 10 matches since veteran Pioli took over, trailing Juventus by nine points.
Its squad includes stars such as Serie A equal top scorer Mauro Icardi (Argentina), Antonio Candreva (Italy) and Croatians Ivan Perisic and Marcelo Brozovic.
Sainsbury, who has won 21 Socceroos caps, signed with Jiangsu in January 2016 for three years on a mega deal and helped the team to second and a Chinese Cup final.
He replaces Italy defender Andrea Ranocchia, who signed a loan deal with Hull City for the rest of the season.
Mat Ryan (Valencia to Genk), Robbie Kruse (Bayer Leverkusen to Liaoning Whowin) and Milos Degenek (1860 Munich to Yokohama F Marinos) were among the other Socceroos to move in the January transfer window.
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