Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Thiago Silva are moving to Manchester City East, aka PSG
A week ago, Thiago Silva extended his five year contract by a year to 2017, increasing his salary from €4m to €6m for the extra year. His agent had actually wanted a salary increase to €7.5m which AC Milan negotiated down to €6m.
Silvio Berlusconi also revealed that they had turned down a €46m transfer offer from PSG for the defender. He also said Zlatan Ibrahimovic would stay on in Milan and there was no question of selling the striker.
What a difference a week makes. As per the Gazetta Dello Sport, the two AC Milan standouts are now reportedly on their way to PSG. Ibrahimovic will receive €12m per year while Thiago Silva's salary increases to €7.5m, as both players sign onto three year contracts. Milan will receive €62m in transfer fees with Zlatan's price tag said to be €35m. In addition, Milan saves on the wages which pushes up the benefit of doing this particular business to €170m. Very tidy sum for a cash strapped club.
Last evening, Berlusconi said the deal was done. However, Mina Raiola, Zlatan's agent clarified the negotiations were ongoing and a final agreement was still far away.
Leonardo, the former Milan manager, now in PSG as the technical director had a huge part to play in the deal prioritizing these two signings. With present PSG coach, Carlo Ancelotti, also an old Milan alum, the connections have paid off handsomely for both clubs. PSG have by now established themselves in the firmament of clubs who seem to care little for financial fair play rules. They are eying Luka Modric who will probably cost them between €20-€25m. PSG were beaten to the Championnat last season by minions Montpellier, much to the displeasure of the Qatar Investment Authority, their multi-billion dollar paymasters. Now, its time to plow in millions more to ensure that never happens.
Milan turn their focus to unfinished business, the transfer of Carlos Tevez that was interrupted at the last minute by Pato's refusal to join PSG. They are also scoping Edin Dzeko, another one of City's interminable strikers who is finding minutes hard to come by at the Etihad.
There seems to be the makings of this preseason producing an unprecedented scale of business. A generation of players close to retirement, clubs retrenching in an effort to step up another level, the eve of the financial fair play rules. The summer could be one whirlwind of transfers and more importantly for all of us, transfer rumours.
Update: Mina Raiola, Zlatan's agent calls his player "a Mona Lisa." The more one looks at Leonardo Da Vinci's masterpiece, the more one is impressed by the similarities. Maybe the smile. How about the nose? That's it, the nose. It really couldn't be about it being priceless because Zlatan is about fifth hand by now.