Manchester United have been approached with a sensational offer to buy Carlos Tevez back from their neighbours Manchester City.
Contact was made this week by a party closely connected with striker Tevez, who quit Manchester United in May 2009, with a view to finding out whether Old Trafford manager Sir Alex Ferguson would be interested in re-signing him.
Ferguson was made aware of the approach, which was neither from City’s command nor with their knowledge, but sources close to Old Trafford indicate there is absolutely no chance of the player returning, even if City did decide to sell.
City announced last week that they had rejected a written transfer request and are adamant that the player will be staying until at least the end of the season.
The suitability of Tevez continuing as captain is under consideration by City manager Mancini, with defender Vincent Kompany poised to take over if he takes a hard line over the saga.
Suggestions that Tevez has considered quitting the game to return permanently to South America because he is homesick and missing his daughters Florencia and Katie are viewed with suspicion by the City hierarchy.
Tevez claims his relationship with chief executive Garry Cook and administrator Brian Marwood has broken down irretrievably.
It is, however, believed that Tevez, 26, has told those close to him that he plans to retire from the sport at the age of 30.
Given permission by the club last weekend to have a short overseas holiday, Tevez chose to go to Tenerife rather than Buenos Aires, where his daughters live.
And last week he was seen in the arms of his new girlfriend, 18-year-old actress Brenda Asnicar, in London.
Balony Buford says: Stay in London and join Arsenal.