Arsenal and Everton appear unlikely to land striker target Michy Batshuayi in the January transfer window, after Standard Liege lodged a complaint against the player’s agent.
The £8million-rated Belgium youth international has been heavily linked with a move away from the Pro League this month, with the Gunners and Toffees keen on bringing the player to the Premier League.
Borussia Dortmund have also been linked, and Christophe Henrotay talked up the possibility of his client making a big move last week.
“There are Premier League clubs that are following him closely, but that's all. The interest from other big leagues is more serious,” he told Sudpresse.
"I'm still surprised by the way Standard communicates about Michy. The situation is very simple: if a club triggers his release clause, he can start negotiating with a club. I've the mandate to negotiate a transfer.”
The comments haven’t sat well with Standard though, and they’ve subsequently released a public statement questioning the FIFA licensed agent.
Unsurprisingly, they are unhappy at the agent touting his client around to clubs, particularly after signing a recent contract extension.
"Standard Liege wishes to challenge FIFA regarding practices of Mr. Christophe Henrotay, licensed FIFA agent,” read the statement.
"Mr Henrotay has, in recent months, made a number of representations to several clubs (in English Premier League for the most part) to offer them to acquire Michy Batshuayi.
"Mr Henrotay tries to convince him to break his contract with Standard Liege, while it has recently been reviewed and extended until 2017. Henrotay has no mandate from Standard for such negotiations. Standard Liege therefore wishes to present this case to FIFA."
The statement throws into question the possibility of the player moving to England, with Arsenal one of those clubs who will potentially miss out.
Arsene Wenger’s side are in title contention this season, but the Gunners lack depth up-front at the Emirates Stadium, with Olivier Giroud and Nicklas Bendtner the only trusted options.
Batshuayi would have been one for the future at Arsenal, but also brings presence and goals that the club will now have to look for elsewhere.
The same is true of Everton, who have been benefiting from another Belgian striker this season in the shape of Romelu Lukaku.
However, manager Roberto Martinez has little in the way of cover, with Nikica Jelavic struggling for form in the top flight with the Toffees.
With Batshauyi unlikely to make the move to Goodison Park before February 1st, the Everton boss may now want to take his transfer search in another direction too.