Santos president Luis Alvaro Ribeiro: We will sign Al-Gharafa's Ze Roberto in May

The veteran midfielder is allegedly close to returning to the Sao Paulo-based club despite previously stating he had an agreement in place to play for a German side
Santos president Luis Alvaro Ribeiro is confident his side will land Al-Gharafa midfielder Ze Roberto in four months' time.

The 37-year-old penned a one-year deal with the Qatari side at the end of 2010-11 following the expiry of his Hamburg contract.

Ze Roberto stated last month he had reached an agreement with an unspecified 'top German club' for 2012-13, but Ribeiro says that the former Bayern Munich and Leverkusen man will join Santos after his contract with Al-Gharafa runs out.

"In the middle of last year, he was here and we talked a lot, I told him about the admiration we have for him," Ribeiro told Radio Bandeirantes.

"We agreed that when he rescinded with Hamburg and returned to Brazil, his priority would be Santos.

"But then he received a lucrative offer from Qatar and the Sheik will not let him leave for anything in the world until May, when his contract expires.

"After that we will talk, we just have to discuss his salary and he will come."

The former Brazil international played at Santos in 2006-07, helping them to reach the Copa Libertadores semi-finals.