Hulk cannot play for another club until next season - despite claiming he could leave Zenit St Petersburg in January.
Hulk has fallen out with Zenit coach Luciano Spalletti and was furious after being substituted late in the club's fine 1-0 win at Milan in the Champions League on Tuesday night, which secured a place in the Europa League.
"I feel fine in St Petersburg, my family is fine and my son is fine," Hulk told Premium Calcio. "But if the situation with Luciano Spalletti does not resolve itself, I could leave in January. I don't know if Italy would be my destination, but anything can happen."
However, FIFA regulations which permit a player to play for only two clubs in a season would automatically block the striker from playing for any other club. This also applies to loans. Hulk made two league appearances for FC Porto before moving to Zenit, where he has only managed to score two goals in ten appearances since his €40 million switch.
One loophole previously used by Javier Mascherano allows a player to represent three clubs if one of those is in an overlapping transfer window. Mascherano was on the books of Corinthians before moving to West Ham in August 2006, and then to Liverpool in January 2007. However, the Russian league has now fallen into line with the rest of the major European leagues and operates on a 2012-13 season rather than a calendar year.
FIFA are strict over registration regulations and will not allow any kind of special dispensation. In January 2008, Daniel Cousin was blocked from joining Fulham from Rangers because he had also played an InterToto Cup match and 20 minutes of Ligue 1 football for Lens in August. And Didier Drogba was refused permission to sign for a club on loan outside the transfer window just last month.