These individuals have in their possession a document bearing an official Manchester City football club letterhead and they are insisting that they have the authority to act on behalf of the club. However, as David Villa's agent, Jose Luis Tamargo, discovered when he met with these individuals, this document is dated the 4th September 2008 - and therefore predates the exchange of ownership at the club that took place in mid-September.
Consequently, Tamargo has been in contact with Manchester City and been informed that these people have absolutely no legal authority to act on behalf of the premiership club or the new owners at Eastlands.
In fact, many of the transfer rumours that have emerged in recent days are a direct consequence of these individuals attempting to broker deals - without actually representing the club, or its owners, in any capacity.Over the last couple of weeks, individuals bearing this document, have approached the family of Kaka as well as Lionel Messi's father. However, on both occasions, contact with Manchester City football club has revealed that the club itself has sanctioned no such approaches.
Balague has reported a fair amount on his website since the takeover, predominantly in response to the reports linking us to Spanish or La Liga players and of course comes on the back of yesterday's comments from Roque Santa Cruz.
In today's climate within football, there are no doubt a plethora of agents, player representatives and so forth hawking players and clubs about - in most cases working solely in their own interests, but this story is specifically stating they purpoting to representative the club. Not the first time of course that a story of this nature has surfaced and Rafael Honigstein reported that a list was being circulated around Europe's top agents in the wake of the takeover and January window.
What makes me uncomfortable here though is the presence of Thaksin, with the story stating it is his cronies who are clearly acting without the authority of the current ownership/board, and you do wonder exactly what their motives are.
How this leaves us when it comes to 'above board' negotiations come January is unknown, but I can't imagine it creates a favourable impression on the key players and agents which could cost us further down the line.
Since initial comments in the wake of the takeover, the tone from all concerned at the club has been far more conservative, almost to the point of being underwhelming, yet incidents like this will simply fuel the wilder rumours that are being bandied around - something that I imagine will hardly recede as there is now one eye on the January window.