Middlesbrough chairman Steve Gibson has hit out at Mark Viduka and Yakubu Aiyegbeni saying the club are well shot of the pair.
Viduka made his first return to Middlesbrough on Sunday scoring for new club Newcastle in the 2-2 draw at The Riverside.
The Australian international accused Middlesbrough of not doing enough to keep him after he left the club on a free transfer in the summer.
However, Gibson has blasted Viduka and revealed he felt 'tainted' by Viduka's wage demands fearing his new contract could have financially damaged the club.
Wages"We spoke to him and his agent last Christmas and I was told very early that it was about money and that Mark would go to the highest bidder," said Gibson.
"The wages went up by many millions and I felt almost tainted by it.
"I felt so uncomfortable that it was almost a relief when he went to Newcastle because of the sums involved.
"A four or five-year deal with players today can be a risk of £25million, decisions have to be precise and detailed.
"Mark Viduka is 32 on his next birthday and he was asking for a three-year contract and asking for a figure which, over a year, would equate to over half of our gate income. He averaged eight goals a season in the Premier League. He turned down a fantastic offer and we move on."
Gibson also believes Middlesbrough have done the right thing in selling Yakubu to Everton claiming the Nigerian "switched off halfway through last season and we still don't know why".
Meanwhile, Boro boss Gareth Southgate has hit out at Newcastle fans for the taunts aimed at Mido during Sunday's game.
Mido was booked for making a gesture to the Newcastle fans after scoring and Southgate was unhappy at the nature of the abuse aimed at the Egyptian international.
Abuse"It's OK for 3,000 to abuse one person. But when the boot is on the other foot, he gets punished," said Southgate.
"In terms of civil liberties, I find that very strange. After scoring the goal, we had to calm him down a bit."