Manchester City's asking price for Joao Cancelo could prevent his loan to Bayern Munich becoming a permanent deal, the German giants have indicated.
Bayern sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic told the Bild am Sonntag newspaper it is hard to imagine the Bundesliga leaders coughing up what City would be seeking for the full-back.
Cancelo made a surprising switch to Bayern before the transfer window closed on Tuesday, with the short-term deal including an option to buy the Portuguese defender at the end of the campaign.
That is reported to be a €70million (£62.8m) option, which would put the player who turns 29 in May among the most expensive signings in Bayern's history.
Salihamidzic said: "We're playing with open cards. The most important thing is that Joao feels comfortable in Munich and can perform in the second half of the season. But we also made it clear to him that this sum is difficult for us to imagine in the next few years."
Salihamidzic, a former Bayern full-back himself, hinted there could still be an agreement reached, even if the fee inserted as an option for Bayern appears beyond them at present.
He said: "If all sides absolutely want a common solution, you can manage that in the end. He knows that he has been one of our dream players for years."
@J__Nagelsmann on Cancelo: "He's a very likeable player and will help better us. He's a fighter who likes to play as much as possible and who wants to impact the game. He adds new options to our team. He was very strong in the first half against Mainz." pic.twitter.com/CQGtUpwsXh— FC Bayern Munich (@FCBayernEN) February 3, 2023
Cancelo started more Premier League games than any other City outfield player (36) last season as they won the title, having more touches (3,908) and attempting more passes than anyone else in the league (2,951).
He made his Bayern debut on Wednesday in a 4-0 win over Mainz in the DFB-Pokal, assisting Eric Choupo-Moting for the opening goal.
Salihamidzic told the German newspaper the deal for Cancelo did not involve a loan fee, putting that down to "network, but of course also luck".
Cancelo has a contract with City that runs through to 2027, having signed a two-year extension to his deal last February.