Valencia President Layhoon Chan insists Jesus Garcia Pitarch controls the club’s signings, not agent Jorge Mendes.
Mendes had been close to Valencia owner Peter Lim, representing former Coach Nuno Santo and a number of players brought to Mestalla, but Chan insists Pitarch, appointed earlier in 2016, will be free to work as he sees fit.
“We wouldn’t have signed him otherwise,” Chan argued in an interview with AS.
“Rufete’s exit left a void in the structure and we’ve begun to build. Why now? It’s a very important decision. It’s trusting one person with hundreds of millions of euros. You have to think about it.
“We needed to be comfortable. I’ve worked with Lim for 25 years and the only thing I know for sure is he will make Valencia great. Hopefully we achieve that in three years but if not, then in five.”
Mendes’ closeness to the Mestalla high command was probed further, however, and Chan explained that the relationship was a long-standing one.
“Jorge is a friend, from before we arrived at Valencia,” Chan stressed.
“His success in world football is beyond doubt. He defends his business and we defend ours.”
Chan admitted also that Valencia wasn’t the first club Lim attempted to buy out, naming Liverpool and Atletico Madrid.
“We made a bid for Liverpool in 2009, but the Royal Bank of Scotland decided on the current American owners,” she confirmed.
“Atletico? Yes. There was contact. But by 2012 we had already spoken to Manuel Llorente for Valencia and then the sale process with Bankia began.
“There were nine months of difficult negotiations and I can assure you, after all the trouble we went through, we’re not here to leave in a year and I don’t accept anyone saying we’re here to make money.”