Tare: Brayan Perea is no second choice
Lazio had to make do with Brayan Perea to strengthen their attack on transfer deadline day, although he is no second-choice alternative to their other transfer target Burak Yilmaz, according to director of sport Igli Tare.
Perea arrived from Deportivo Cali after a move for the Turkey international broke down due to an agent's demands, according to Tare. He insists the Colombian forward has long since been a Lazio target and he was not merely a panic buy.
"The signing of Perea must not be regarded as a consolation," Tare told Lazio Style Radio. "I said back in January that I felt he is a youngster with great prospects. Since we only had one place available for a non-EU player, we were faced with a choice between him and Yilmaz, who would have been picked due to his greater experience.
"With Perea and the other youngsters, we will continue to carry forward the work this club has done in recent years, which is to try to create important, solid foundations for the future."
Having admitted it was either Perea or Burak Yilmaz, Tare explained why the Turkish striker did not arrive, blaming the player's agent for throwing a spanner in the works.
"I realise the fans are disappointed that we didn't sign Burak Yilmaz and I want to explain the way things are, underlining that we always want to improve as much as possible," Tare said.
"We were in negotiations with Burak Yilmaz with the clear intention of bringing him to Rome. We're disappointed because this is the second time that a player's destiny has not been determined by him. We were faced with his agent's demands and we tried, in spite of this, to bring him to Lazio, but it wasn't possible."
With Libor Kozak moving to Aston Villa and Antonio Rozzi joining Real Madrid's reserves, alternatives to first-choice Miroslav Klose are at a premium.