Sir Alex Ferguson has admitted he knew Carlos Tevez would not be staying with Manchester United long before the striker turned down a permanent contract.
Tevez is believed to be on the verge of joining rivals Manchester City after opting to leave Old Trafford at the end of his two-year loan contract last month.
United had offered the Argentina striker a five-year contract following protracted negotiations between his advisors and club chief executive David Gill.
But Ferguson claims he was not surprised to hear that Tevez would be leaving the Premier League champions after an exchange between the pair towards the end of last season.
"I half expected Carlos Tevez would be going a long time back," he claimed.
"I think he maybe did a deal around January because I spoke to him and gave him an offer on the night we played Inter Milan and he never came back to me.
"I phoned him on holiday and he never got back to me and I texted him twice and he never got back to me then either. So obviously he had made his mind up a long time ago.
"He was a good player and did well for us. But he obviously assessed the situation and wanted to go somewhere else."