Napoli have announced that Manchester City will not meet the £54 million buy-out clause for sought-after striker Edinson Cavani.
The Uruguayan international featured in the Confederations Cup victory over Nigeria last night where they ran-out 2-1 winners following goals from Diego Lugano and Diego Forlan.
Cavani has been the subject of much speculation this summer with a switch to both Chelsea and City, as well as a host of European heavyweights including Real Madrid.
Napoli’s president Aurelio De Laurentiis confirmed that City had made an enquiry about a move for the forward, but they refused to meet the £54m minimum buy-out clause.
"Manchester City do not have the money to pay for Cavani," De Laurentiis told reporters. "They said 'we will never spend €63m on Cavani’.”
De Laurentiis also addressed claims by Cavani that a move to Madrid would be a “dream”, claiming that his words had been taken out of context although he did understand the lure of such a club.
"With Edinson nothing has changed,” he continued. “Headlines I've read in the papers did not represent his words exactly. He could never deny the importance of a club like Real Madrid's, but don't forget that he made his name at Napoli.
"If a club like Anzhi (Makhachkala) enquire about him, maybe he says no, but other clubs like Bayern, Barcelona or Real Madrid could persuade him to leave.
"He knows that he has a contract and an obligation to us, and there is a buyout clause. Cavani knows that at Napoli he is the most important player. I do not know whether, at Real Madrid or in other teams, he will be as important.
"[Cavani] will decide what to do and we will support him."
City are believed to have turned their attentions to Spanish target Isco as they attempt to beat Madrid to his signature, while the Italian club are said to be unable to afford the transfer of Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel.
New manager Rafa Benitez was responsible for bringing the Slovakian captain to Anfield during his reign at the club, and he is rumoured to be interested in a transfer as his future remains unclear under Reds boss Brendan Rodgers.