Agent claims City will offer €30 million for Zarate
Mauro Zarate is reportedly a €30 million target for Manchester City after his agent revealed that the club have shown interest.
The diminutive striker, who impressed on loan at Birmingham last season, is currently at Lazio but his registration is owned by the Qatari club Al Sadd.
A great season so far for the Italian side has turned him into one of Serie A's most in-demand players and his representative, Jose Alberti, has revealed City are preparing a bid to bring him to Eastlands.
Alberti said: "The Arabs who own the club are interested in him. We spoke last month and they told me they were ready to offer €30 million to buy him.
"Their aim is to get to the same level as Real Madrid were at during the 'galactico' era. But the player is Lazio's to lose. Mauro loves Rome and will sign a permanent deal as long as the club make a suitable offer."
Meanwhile, City manager Mark Hughes has admitted he has received ''tentative enquiries'' about some of his players but is adamant he will not let anyone leave without signing a replacement first.
''We've had tentative enquiries, no offers or bids,'' Hughes told City's official website. ''I'm not really in a position to allow players to go before we get players in given the amount of players we have unavailable at the moment.
''I'd much prefer to get players in rather than letting players go out first.''
One such addition could be Blackburn's Roque Santa Cruz, although Rovers' boss Sam Allardyce has urged City ''to blow us out of the water'' with an offer for the striker.
Hughes confirmed on Thursday the club had made a ''significantly higher'' bid than the £12million offered during the summer for the striker, only for Rovers to swiftly say no.
With money seemingly no object to City's Abu Dhabi owners, the ball is now in their court as to whether they make a new offer Blackburn would be unable to refuse.
''I can't second guess what Manchester City are going to do,'' said Allardyce. ''Whatever happens between now and next week, as time goes on in this usual transfer window of mayhem, we will wait and see.
''You never say never about anything because you never know what is around the corner when January is on the boil.
''At the end there is always going to be a price, but there is no price we are going to put on Roque's head. It is down to Man City to make the offer and blow us out of the water.
''Obviously, we simply want him to play for us and help us stay in the Premier League, which is the most important thing for me and this club.''