As the case of Alexander Pereira vs La Scala rumbles on without resolution, it seems increasingly likely the slick salesman will hang on to his plum job in Milan.
Calls for blood continue from certain quarters, notably the Lombardy region's culture minister. But the longer proceedings are drawn out, the harder it becomes to find a satisfactory replacement who can start work in September. With the all-powerful Scala unions opposed to any interim solution, and the blow to La Scala's credibility if Pereira is sacked before he even begins, his position is strengthened by default.
The mayor of Milan, who also heads the La Scala board, has spent the last couple of weeks gathering evidence. He confirmed in a RAI interview that the situation is now clear to him, but declined to go into details. His next step is to report to the full board, which he says will make a final decision on 12 May.
The Italian press have made a few educated guesses on the outcome. La Repubblica says the mayor will propose that Pereira stays for now, but is placed on probation until the end of the year. Il Giorno suggests that Pereira may be forced to take either a cut in his salary (rumoured to total €450,000) or a reduction in his five year contract. Whatever the result, it seems unlikely Pereira will get away scot-free.