Maxi Lopez and Fabio Quagliarella remain at the centre of the Rossoneri's transfer plans in the continued absence of Antonio Cassano, while Ivorian's wages make his signing a no-goEXCLUSIVE
By Salvatore Landolina & Kris Voakes
Didier Drogba will not become an AC Milan player in January as the Scudetto holders are making plans to carry out a budget transfer campaign, a senior club official has told Goal.com.
The Chelsea forward has been the subject of much speculation in the peninsula due to Milan CEO Adriano Galliani's well-known admiration for his style of play, but that alone will not be enough to persuade the champions to make a move for the Ivorian.
Milan officials fear that Antonio Cassano will not return from his recent ischemic attack until the beginning of the 2012-13 season, but they will not change their original plan to sign a replacement without spending a significant sum of money.
The club insider told Goal.com that this rules out Drogba despite his contract at Stamford Bridge expiring in the summer, as his hefty wage demands would be viewed as unworkable by Massimiliano Allegri's side as they continue their bid to reduce the squad's overall salary costs.
Instead, Milan have their sights set on either free transfers or loan deals that could be made permanent come the end of the season, with Catania's Maxi Lopez and Juventus' Fabio Quagliarella among their list of potential short-term signings.
Galliani has recently gone on the record as saying that Lopez could be a star at San Siro, telling a press gathering: "Lopez is an excellent player. He would fit in nicely at Milan."
And the club chief remains in contact with Catania sporting director Pietro Lo Monaco, though discussions regarding the Argentine remain in the early stages.
Quagliarella, meanwhile, has been used very rarely this season by Juventus coach Antonio Conte and could look for a loan away from Turin in the winter. However, he and team-mate Amauri, another mooted Milan target, could find any attempts to seal a switch to a title rival met with resistance from the Bianconeri hierarchy.
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