Manchester City are alert to the possibility that Monaco’s £51m forward Radamel Falcao may have to be sold, amid rumours of a £75m fine being imposed on the principality club by the French football authorities, if they do not get their tax affairs in-line with other French teams.
City – who are 33/20 to kick-off their season by winning both halves against Newcastle United at Eastlands – were credited with an interest in the prolific Columbian, who scored an incredible 94 goals in 115 league appearances for Porto and Atletico Madrid in the last four seasons, earlier this summer.
Manuel Pellegrini has already brought strikers Alvaro Negredo and Stevan Jovetic to the north west for a combined £44m, but with speculation about the future of perpetual substitute Edin Dzeko and a seemingly unlimited well of oil money available to him, the former Real Madrid and Villareal boss would welcome a player of Falcao’s quality.
Monaco are taking advantage of their unique financial situation by paying players massive tax-free salaries – with Falcao reportedly taking home £250,000 every week – but the French Football Federation see this as an unfair advantage and are looking at ways to force the club into changing their recruitment policy, with a punitive fine mooted.
City are one of the few clubs that could come up with a financial package for the former River Plate youth, who has already got off to a flyer at his new club, getting on the score-sheet in each of his first two games in Ligue 1, against Bordeaux and Montpellier.