Martin Whitmarsh believes Kimi Raikkonen is determined to move away from Lotus and also revealed McLaren held discussions with the Finn last year.
Although Lotus are determined to keep Raikkonen next year, the 33-year-old is refusing to enter contract negotiations with the squad until they have resolved "certain issues".
The 2007 World Champion, though, remains a key figure in the 2014 driver market as he has also been strongly linked with moves to Red Bull and Ferrari.
While McLaren are unlikely to change their drivers for next season, Whitmarsh has admitted they held talks with Raikkonen in 2012 about a possible return to Woking.
Asked if they had ever considered re-signing the Finn, Whitmarsh told the official F1 website: "Yes, we have. Kimi has always been great and I am a big fan of him. There is a lot of speculation out there at the moment, so let's see what happens.
He added: "I probably shouldn't be, but I'm completely open - last year we had talks with him, but for various reasons it didn't happen. This year we've had no talks - yet."
As for where Raikkonen will end up, Whitmarsh said: "Obviously Kimi is determined to go somewhere else and I sense that he will not succeed in that goal, so let's see how he gets on there."