Adriano's agent, Gilmar Rinaldi, refused to rule out a move to the capital when asked about Roma's interest yesterday: "A loan to Roma? There's time enough ... if you like the destination."

Roma coach Luciano Spalletti expressed interest in Adriano 18 months ago and continues to admire the Brazilian, despite his off-field problems. For his part, Adriano would welcome the chance of working with a coach famous for rebuilding players' careers.

The big stumbling block for any January deal will be Inter, which would prefer Adriano move abroad.