The Manchester City career of Elano is hanging by a slender thread, with the Brazil international left out of the club's trip to South Africa and seemingly top of their clear-out list.
The Bundesliga side, Cologne, have approached City about taking the 28-year-old on loan and though he is understood not to be keen on the idea Elano may soon have to resign himself to a new challenge.
There has also been interest from La Liga, with Real Zaragoza among the clubs linked with him. Elano thrilled Eastlands with his early displays under Sven-Goran Eriksson in the 2007-08 season but has lacked the work ethic to impress his succcessor, Mark Hughes. His public insistence that he warrants an extension to his current contract, which expires in 2011, has not helped either.
It's no secret that Elano and Mark Hughes had a fractuous relationship during 2008/09, with Elano's winged being clipped followed an impressive first season in 2007/08 (and an excellent first half of that season in particular).
It was even reported in The Independent piece that he was left out of the South Africa touring party, but this is a little lazy journalism as even a quick google search shows he will arrive a week late (along with Robinho) after playing for Brazil following the end of the Premier League season.
Still, whilst Hughes doesn't have to move players to balance the books following his outlay this summer, a bloated squad in certain areas will be a hinderance, and looking at how we may well line-up this season, it could even be argued that Elano may not feature on the bench at full strength.
Should that be the case, he could well be a headache the club could do without, so I would expect Hughes to be receptive to the possibility of Elano moving on, and following the recent arrivals, we may now start to see players moving on