Manchester City are paying an astonishing £47 million fee to Carlos Tévez’s private "owners" in a move that obliterates the British transfer record. The deal makes the Argentina striker the fifth most expensive footballer of all time.
City’s billionaire Arab owners have agreed to pay almost twice the £25.5 million fee widely reported to have changed hands, The Times can reveal. An initial £15 million payment is to be followed by two additional sums of £16 million.
Another £3.5 million will be paid if City win the Champions League while Tévez is at the club — an improbable scenario, but Sheikh Mansour has already shown the lengths to which he is prepared to go to transform the club from perennial underachievers into contenders for the biggest prizes.
This was followed by a denial from Kia Joorabchian today:
"This story is inaccurate and misleading. There appears to be the hand of mischief at work as the numbers quoted are fictitious. There was also no mystery about the true details as full disclosure was made both to the Football Association and the Premier League."
You would expect Tevez's advisors to deny a higher figure was involved, and as no word has come from the club - nor would any likely be forthcoming - it is difficult to do anything other than speculate as to the validity of the report.
What I would say is given the complexity of his ownership and the history involved with Tevez's transfer is that whatever the fee or terms of payment were confirmed to the appropriate authorities when the transfer was concluded, this would surely be the fee paid.
Anything other than an open and transparent negotiation would have been folly on the clubs part.