AC Milan revealed on Thursday that they had received a “colossal” bid from Manchester City for Brazilian superstar Kaka and were considering the world-record offer.
Milan acknowledged for the first time the bid on their official TV channel.
Mediaset, the TV company founded by Milan owner Silvio Berlusconi, claimed City had bid 150 million euros (US$197.5 million) for the former World Player of the Year and offered him a salary of 15 million euros a season.
“This is a delicate moment. There is an offer from Manchester City for Kaka and Milan are considering it,” Milan TV presenter Mauro Suma said. “Considering it doesn’t mean there’s been a decision or acceptance. This is not a definitive decision or a fait accompli, there are hours and days ahead.”
Earlier in the day there had been conflicting reports over the state of play of City’s bid for the 26-year-old.
The club’s assistant manager Mark Bowen had told the BBC that a deal was “very close,” but an Arabian business Web site insisted that talks had broken down.
City manager Mark Hughes, however, was quick to dismiss those reports telling a press conference: “I’ve seen these reports but you have to bear in mind that the people who are being given a platform to speak do not represent the owner [Sheikh Mansour] or [chairman] Khaldoon [al-Mubarak].”
“In my opinion they should not be given a platform to say what they have because in this instance it is completely untrue because negotiations are still taking place,” Hughes said. “It would be naive to think I have not been involved in discussions over this transfer. I have had meetings about it and have had an input. It is impossible to say whether it will go through or not but we will let everyone know when there is something to say.”
Reports in the Italian press backed up Hughes’ claim, with the Gazzetta dello Sport claiming Milan had given City permission to talk to Kaka on Tuesday with City representative and notorious Iranian-born agent Kia Joorabchian making contact with Kaka’s father and agent, Bosco Leite.
Kaka himself was quoted as saying that he was happy to stay at AC Milan if the club did not want to sell him, but he has given every indication in the past that he would love to play in the English Premiership at some stage in his career.
He is already one of the best paid players in the world and his spokesman Diogo Kotscho said it would not be money that would prove decisive.
“It’s not impossible for Ricky [Kaka] to transfer to Manchester City as long as the English club demonstrates it is preparing to become one of the best teams in the world,” he said.