Atlético Madrid president Enrique Cerezo has hit out at the representatives of Paris Saint-Germain striker Edinson Cavani after a deal to sign the Uruguayan broke down.
Los Rojiblancos were eager to bring Cavani to the club during the January window, and he was keen to make the move after handing in a transfer request. However, the two sides never managed to strike a deal.
Speaking to Movistar Futbol (via Goal) after his side’s 1-0 loss to Real Madrid, Cerezo suggested that the deal was held back by Cavani’s agent and family, whose demands saw the move break down.
“Someday I will tell why Cavani did not come and they will prove me right,” Cerezo explained. “I don’t want to point anyone out, but I think it’s a shame about the situation of some players with their relatives and their representatives. It’s outrageous. We’re not here to be robbed or do anything strange.”
This appears to back up an earlier report from Mundo Deportivo, which claimed that Cavani’s agent, Walter Guglielmone, wanted €18m for his part in the deal – almost equal to the transfer fee which Atlético had offered.
However, Guglielmone hit back at such allegations, telling Cadena SER that the deal broke down because the two clubs could not reach an agreement.
“Do you think that Edi did not play for almost a month with PSG so that I could drop the operation for a commission and stop Edi from fulfilling his dream of going to Atlético Madrid?,” he said.
“And with all the mess we put together with the PSG? If it were for money, Edi would have gone to England, Manchester [United] or Chelsea.
“Atlético could not cover the total economic cost of the operation and PSG did not want to lower their asking price. Atlético Madrid did not close the agreement,” the agent added (via AS).
“Who is Enrique Cerezo? I never saw him this month, I don’t even know what role he plays.”
Manchester United were also deterred from doing a deal for Cavani due to the money involved, estimated to be in excess of £65m according to journalist Paul Hirst. This figure includes a €20m (£16.8m) transfer fee and two and a half years of the Uruguayan’s £360,000 per week wages. These figures were not to the Red Devils’ liking, leading the club to explore different options.