Former Sevilla sporting director Monchi has appeared to confirm he will join Roma at the end of the season – ‘barring any surprises’.
The 48-year-old left the Andalucians earlier this month after a 17-year stint as their transfer guru and despite speculation he could go to the Premier League or Paris Saint-Germain, he now looks set for the Italian capital.
"I am working on the transfer of power and little else: the work has already been done, all the pressing issues dealt with," the 48-year-old told AS.
"And I have prepared my goodbye, it's not easy.
"I continued to work as if I were to remain here for life, wanting to do this until everyone told me ‘it’s over’.
"Will I go to Roma? It is not done, but it's the closest option. If everything goes the right way and there’s no surprises I’ll go Roma, but I never say it’s done until there's a signature.
"Marcelo arrived by plane to sign for Sevilla, but then landed in Madrid: that’s why I do not want to say too much until everything has been confirmed.
"No person of stature from any Spanish club has called me. There are brokers from several big clubs who have expressed interest in me, but I consider this opportunism: if they were major clubs, they would have called me directly.
"It's also true that I said that I would never work for another club after Sevilla in Spain, so it would have been harder to call me.
"I think most of the Sevilla fans have got the message: I needed fresh air after 29 years here.
"And I need to continue to work, but with a different side dish.
"My link with Sevilla was professional: it was the engine of success, but also of wear and tear and detachment.
"The bitterness of defeats was almost equivalent to the satisfaction of victories, I was not been able to split the role of sporting director from that of a fan.
"I tried to convince myself to stay, but a time came when I could no longer: in the future I will leave other destinations suffering, but I will also try not to bind myself to them completely, like I did here.
"The club asked me and I advised them to go for continuity: if you take someone from outside, he will eventually be ‘a substitute for Monchi’."