MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MAY 23: Carlos Tevez of Manchester City waves to the fans during the Manchester City FA Cup Winners Parade at the City of Manchester stadium on May 23, 2011 in Manchester, United Kingdom. (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)
It was widely reported earlier today that Brazilian side Corinthians - for whom Tevez played prior to arriving in England - had tabled a bid of €40m (£35.3m) for Tevez, an offer that was later confirmed as having been rejected by City. Despite this, Tevez's agent, Kia Joorabchian, was contrastingly quoted as saying a deal would be 'difficult' but also suggesting an agreement was 'close':
"Negotiations have already begun," Joorabchian said. "Corinthians are in contact with us. His [Tevez's] dream and mine is to see him back with Corinthians. He said he has a job that does not end there, he wants to return because he has the dream of winning the Copa Libertadores.
"Corinthians have made the offer, now it depends only on Manchester City. City have to make a decision. Everybody is working to make this happen, me, Corinthians, Tevez, Adrian Ruocco [another of Tevez's representatives]. It is impossible to determine the situation, but I think it is close."
The link to Corinthians is one that both Duncan Castles and Tariq Panja speculate further upon and it would be a bid that suits City in terms of Tevez not remaining within Europe - although there will likely be a reduced fee received as a result, being financed primarily through increased TV and sponsorship revenues:
"They mean business, they have the funds, they have a €55 million TV deal, a €26 million sponsorship deal, which is the fourth largest in the world, and they are building a new stadium which will open in 2013 holding 68,000, which will stage the opening ceremony for the World Cup."
It was somewhat of a surprise that it was a South American side that has made the first move (with many anticipating Real Madrid to be the front runners) and whilst an offer in the region of £35 million may appear an appealing one, there is no clue as to how the offer is structured (with some reports of an initial loan) or what additional terms such as sell-on clauses (surely a no-brainer) were included.
Given the nature of the affair to date though, the prospect of a swift conclusion is unlikely and it may even be that the initial bid from Corinthians will now serve to flush out other interested parties and bring them to the negotiating table.