Napoli misfit Edu Vargas now looks set to join Gremio after talks with Sao Paolo broke down.
Vargas, 23, has failed to settle at the Serie A club since his £11.5 million transfer from Universidad de Chile just over a year ago.
The Chile international seemed set to join Sao Paolo this week only for the deal to collapse unexpectedly, with the Brazilian club criticising the way Napoli behaved in negotiations.
“First they wanted €1.5 million for an 18-month loan and we accepted,” Sao Paulo president Juvenal Juvencio told Lancenet. “Then they wanted the same amount for a 12-month deal. Then they came back to us and asked to insert a clause which would allow them to recall him at any moment.
“I said I would only accept that if they then gave us back our money should they opt to recall him. That’s when the deal collapsed.”
Now it seems Vargas is set to join Gremio, who will pay a fee of €1.5 million to take the player on loan for the rest of the season, with Napoli sporting director Riccardo Bigon confirming the deal.
“Something happened with Vargas that I’d never seen before,” he told Sky Italia. “He received many offers from South America and we are set to complete a transfer within hours, so it could be made official tomorrow.
“This shows the huge interest around Edu, who will gain experience in a different league. It will be a six-month loan with a series of options, but they will not have the option to buy him outright.”