With Lyon forward Karim Benzema appearing reluctant to leave France until after next summer's World Cup and sources close to Valencia's David Villa suggesting that the player has set his heart on a move to Real Madrid, United's options to replace Tevez should he leave Old Trafford seem to be diminishing.
Tevez and his advisers have yet to make a definitive announcement on the Argentine forward's intentions for next season, despite 'positive' talks between United chief executive David Gill and the player's representative, Kia Joorabchian, on June 3.
But with Ferguson due back at his desk in the middle of next week, United are keen for clarity on the Tevez situation in order to shape their plans for next season, either with or without the former West Ham forward.
United and Manchester City now appear to be in a two-way battle for Tevez's signature with Chelsea distancing themselves from reports linking them with a move for the 25 year-old.
The Premier League champions are understood to have agreed to pay the required £25.5 million fee to purchase Tevez from his economic rights holders and a highly-placed source at the club has admitted that the player has been offered a generous package, with wages in the region of £95,000-a-week, to stay at Old Trafford.
United believe that they have met all of their obligations towards the player and his owners and there is a growing sense of frustration within the club that the situation has not moved since the discussions between Gill and Joorabchian two weeks' ago.
Tevez, whose two-year loan agreement expires on June 30, is understood to remain unhappy at his reduced involvement in Ferguson's first-team last season, particularly in United's key fixtures, and the club's failure to move more quickly in thrashing out a permanent deal has left the player seriously considering a move across Manchester to Eastlands.
City are prepared to offer Tevez wages of £140,000-a-week in order to tempt him from Old Trafford.