Juan Jose Cobo is on the verge of signing a new contract with Geox-TMC. The team needs the Vuelta a Espana winner's signature as soon as possible, as it needs his points to qualify for a UCI WorldTour ranking.
According to biciciclismo.com, Cobo's agent received the written offer on Wednesday, and after discussions with team manager Mauro Gianetti, made a counteroffer on Friday. Although there are “big economic differences to iron out,” a final agreement is expected this weekend.
While the team very much needs Cobo, the rider has other options. He is said to have three other offers, including two from WorldTour teams.
Ongoing negotiations had been stalled until recently. A meeting between sports director Josean Matxin and Cobo is said to have helped move matters along.
Cobo, 30, has spent almost his entire career with Gianetti and Matxin, turing pro in 2004 and riding for the team under the various names of Saunier Duval, Scott-American Beef, Fuji-Servetto. The only exception was 2010, when he was with Caisse d'Epargne, before returning to the team now called Geox-TCM in 2011.
Cobo won the Vuelta a Espana this year in a close duel with Sky's Christopher Froome and Bradley Wiggins. He also won one stage and the combination classification.