Corinthians president 'prays day and night' he can sell Alexandre Pato
Corinthians president Roberto de Andrade said he "prays day and night" that he can sell former AC Milan forward Alexandre Pato, who is currently on loan at Sao Paolo.
Lazio have shown interest, according to reports in Brazil, and the Italian club are willing to invest €9 million ($31.4 Brazilian reales) to buy the 25-year-old, who did not live up to Corinthians' expectations and after one season was loaned out to Sao Paolo through 2016.
"Everyone knows that Corinthians, pretend, want and pray day and night to sell Pato. Next year he has to perform and respect what he agreed to. The choices are his, not mine," De Andrade told ESPN Brazil.
"It is in the realm of speculation right now, but there is something in the works and I am optimistic that it will take place."
Asked whether he feels that Pato is remorseful, De Andrade did not hide his frustration with the striker.
Logically I would not have done [the negotiation] again," De Andrade said. "Without knowing the future, it's obvious. But at that time he was everything we wanted in an athlete, ideal age, he was from here, he had played in Europe, he was on the Selecao. I would have given him five years and then at 28, we could have sold him.
"Obviously, I regret it, looking at the outcome. But at the time, most of my critics even agreed. He had all the ingredients for success. But it didn't work. The blame of not working out falls 100 percent on the athlete. All that could have been done for him technically was done. Now with Sao Paolo, he has had flashes in big matches, but his technique has been below average."
When he was still managing QPR back in the January transfer window, Harry Redknapp told Sky Sports he turned down an offer to sign Brazilian striker Alexander Pato, but will not be making a move for the former AC Milan forward.
Pato, 25, was brought to the San Siro from Internacional in 2007, though failed to live up to his potential before returning to Brazil with a move to Corinthians in 2013 on a €15 million deal.