AC Milan owner and honorary president Silvio Berlusconi has confirmed that his side turned down a €46 million bid from Paris St. Germain for defender Thiago Silva, who has also been on Manchester City’s wishlist.
Berlusconi reportedly flew all the way to Paris to conduct negotiations with PSG Sporting Director and former Milan boss Leonardo but eventually, Milan decided against selling Thiago.
“We have not changed our mind. We had no intention of selling the player but we had received an extraordinary offer from PSG. We have always been clear and PSG should not feel let down,” Berlusconi was quoted by Soccernet.
He added: “We told them from the start that we would take a decision once we had looked at the offer and seen what is out there in the market in terms of finding a possible replacement. They made us a very interesting offer, close to €46 million.
“We considered the possibility (to sell) and we looked at the central defenders that would replace Thiago Silva but we haven’t found an adequate player. The old heart of Silvio Berlusconi has allowed us to reject this offer.”
The decision to retain Thiago Silva means that Milan may now need to increase the player’s €4 million per year salary in order to keep him happy for the duration of his contract till 2016.
“Thiago Silva is a great man and we can find an easy solution. We hope to have the best defence next season,” Berlusconi asserted when asked if he will negotiate more favorable terms with Thiago.
Leonardo refreshingly told reporters that the negotiations ended on a good note despite the two clubs failing to reach an agreement over the sale of his compatriot.
“We thought the negotiations would be successful. However, in order for that to happen, you need the wish of the two clubs to complete a deal.
“Milan seemed willing but then there were certain things that blocked the situation. This can happen in football and I cannot accuse (vice-president Adriano) Galliani of anything, he remains my great teacher. Having gone as far as we did in the negotiation, we decided to pull out,” Leonardo concluded.