Santos Vice-President Odílio Rodrigues Filho admits Robinho deal will be "a difficult operation"
Vice-President Odílio Rodrigues Filho has conceded it will be “a difficult operation” to bring Robinho back to Santos.
The 30 year-old, who made his professional debut with the Santástico in 2002, has reportedly been told he can leave current owners Milan, as Head Coach Filippo Inzaghi looks to remould his under-performing squad.
New Major League Soccer franchise Orlando City are believed to be keen on pairing Robinho with recent signing Kaká, but have so far struggled to find agreement, which has allowed other clubs to compete for his signature.
Brasileirão leaders Cruzeiro were initially linked, but have since distanced themselves from making a bid, while Atlético Mineiro and Liga MX side Tigres UANL, plus Santos, are believed to be keen.
Speaking to Globoesporte, Rodrigues Filho confirmed the latter’s interest - there has even been talk of a short-term loan ahead of a switch to Orlando - but admits Santos can't compete financially.
“He is an idol round here and we contacted his agent, but it’s a difficult operation due to his wages,” he said, as reported by Football Italia.
“These are very high figures for Brazilian football. Orlando? They haven’t completed the move yet, so Robinho is still a Milan player.”
Robinho initially left Santos in July 2005 - after winning two Brasileirão titles - to join Real Madrid for €24 million. The forward had a mixed, but successful spell in Spain and was eventually sold to Manchester City in September 2008 for £33 million. In January 2010, he was loaned back to Santos and helped them win the 2010 Campeonato Paulista and 2010 Copa do Brasil, before moving on to Milan, where he won the Serie A title and Supercoppa Italiana in his first season.