Sir Alex Ferguson has revealed that Carlos Tevez wasn't signed by Manchester United on a permanent deal because he said he was going to quit football in four years' time, although that has been denied by the player's spokesman.
Tevez was at Old Trafford for two years on loan, but United chose not to take up the option to keep him and he joined rivals Manchester City.
Since then, the Argentine has gone on to become one of the best players in the Premier League, leading many to question Ferguson's wisdom over the decision to let him go. However, the canny Scot has revealed the reasons for turning down Tevez, claiming that it would not have been a worthwhile long-term investment.
"Tevez told us he was only going to play for four more years," Ferguson said. "If we had signed him on a five-year contract knowing that he was going to quit in four, there would have been no re-sale value for us."
However, the 27-year-old forward has distanced himself from those claims and it is suggested he will continue his career for another eight years.
''At no time did he discuss retiring with the Manchester United management and Mr Ferguson has not mentioned this at any time before,'' a spokesman for Tevez said.
''In fact Carlos feels he is capable of playing for a further eight years and though he has been in the form of his life, he feels he is only going to get better in the coming years.''
With the £45 million rated Tevez keen to quit City to return to South America to be nearer his family, Ferguson also revealed where he though the striker's future lies, despite recent interest from Italian side Inter Milan.
"I'm not sure Inter would pay £45 million, especially after he's said he wants to go back to Argentina to see his kids. I can see him staying at City," he added.