Negotiations ongoing as Orlando City continue Robinho chase with interest heating up in Brazil
Interest in AC Milan striker Robinho has intensified in recent days, but that hasn't driven Orlando City away from the negotiating table. Far from it, in fact.
The 2015 MLS expansion side hasn't been shy about its interest in the Brazilian forward in recent weeks, with the prospect of adding a second Designated Player following the capture of countryman Kaká an enticing proposition.
On Wednesday, a club spokesman confirmed Orlando City president Phil Rawlins had traveled to New York City, where AC Milan are currently based before playing Olympiacos in a Thursday friendly at BMO Field in Toronto.
Majority owner Flávio Augusto da Silva told a Brazilian radio station this week he expects things to be finalized within 10 days, but it's still not certain where Robinho will end up after reports of talks also taking place with Cruzeiro, Atlético Mineiro and Flamengo.
Orlando City certainly aren't willing to give anything away. Not yet anyway.
“It’s in negotiation. I’m not going to tell you what's holding up the deal, if it’s something specific," general manager Paul McDonough told MLSsoccer.com on Wednesday. "There’s discussions and negotiations that are ongoing.”
Should Orlando City land the 30-year-old World Cup veteran, it’s likely he would spend the rest of 2014 on a similar loan deal to the one agreed between Orlando City, São Paulo FC and Kaká. On July 1, Kaká agreed to terms with Orlando City to become the club’s first Designated Player and will play out 2014 on loan in Brazil with the club where he got his start as a professional.
If he signs with Orlando, Robinho’s preference is reportedly to be loaned to Brazilian side Santos, where he made more than 100 appearances between 2002 and 2005, before joining the Lions in January. But even that option seems in doubt as Santos president Odilio Rodrigues acknowledged his salary demands may be too high to meet.
For now, though, it remains a waiting game in Orlando.
“When we have something to announce," McDonough said, "we will.”