Corinthians have yet to make an offer for Manchester City striker Carlos Tevez but believe he is nearer to sealing a return to the Brazilian club.
Corinthians were interested in signing Tevez during the summer after he declared a desire to leave City, but a deal could not be finalised.
However, his long-term future still remains unclear after Roberto Mancini's allegation that he refused to play against Bayern Munich led to an internal investigation being carried out at City.
The case of Tevez refusing to play was not proven but he has still been fined four weeks' wages for improper conduct and City are prepared to listen to offers when the transfer window reopens in January.
While City have made it clear they will not let the Argentine go in a cut-price deal, Corinthians president Andres Sanchez is now more hopeful of reaching an agreement.
And Sanchez has been quoted in the Brazilian media claiming his club's bid to sign Tevez is back on at a reduced rate of around £16million.
Sanchez told reporters: "Although many people do not believe it, Tevez is much closer to the Corinthians than you can imagine.
"The initial offer was 40m euros and that is now 18m euros because of all the problems he has faced back in England."
Corinthians sporting director Edu seems less confident about his club's chances of landing Tevez, though, insisting that no bid has been lodged with City at this stage.
Edu, who played with City's football development executive Patrick Vieira at Arsenal, also recognises that Tevez holds the key to his own future.
"It is not true that we have made any offer for him," Edu told calciomercatoweb.it.
"We are still thinking about Tevez, but we have to wait and see if there are the right conditions. We expect to know what City will decide, but also what is the will of the player?
"If he wants to return to Argentina or remain in Europe, it is useless for us to present an offer.
"My friendship with Vieira? Patrick is a great friend since our time at Arsenal and it is good to have good contacts with people at other clubs but again, the main thing right now is to understand the will of the player."