This squad would have been a 70-man group divided into four teams, specialising in assassination and other illicit operations. So, no. Initially Itachi wasn’t meant to be a Clan Killer, or a member of the Akatsuki or anything like that. Instead, he was just a leader of a squad that sounds a lot like the ANBU Division.
In fact, Itachi’s role wasn’t the only thing that was different about him. His appearance was a lot different as well. And I’m not too sure if the fans would’ve liked it.
Itachi wore a bandana-style forehead protector, a skin-tight t-shirt, gloves, a coat tied around his waist, and had several scars including an x-shaped scar on his chin. Since Kishimoto scrapped the idea of Itachi to appear like this, these ideas were later Incorporated into Danzō Shimura, and the ANBU.
Would you have like Itachi to be a leader of Konoha special unit instead? Let me know in the comments section below!