Liverpool have pulled the plug on their proposed move for free agent striker Samuel Eto'o after moving closer to the capture of Mario Balotelli from AC Milan.
The Liverpool Echo reports how the former Chelsea man had been lined up by the Reds as an alternative to the Italy international if talks with the Serie 'A' giants or player broke down.
However, in the clearest indication yet that Balotelli will complete a £16 million switch to Anfield before the transfer window closes, Brendan Rodgers has made a U-turn on the decision to offer Eto'o a one-year contract.
The 33-year-old was reportedly after £135,000-a-week in wages - a significant sum for a player entering the twilight of his career.
The Cameroonian made a modest contribution for Jose Mourinho's side last season, and wasn't able to earn an extension at Stamford Bridge. However, clearly he still believes he has what it takes to be a success in the Premier League.
Eto'o was lined up as a possible replacement for Luis Suarez, but with Balotelli poised to be officially unveiled by Liverpool on Monday the journeyman marksman is no longer needed.
There have been some suggestions that the African could now make a surprise switch to Merseyside rivals Everton, with Roberto Martinez on the lookout for back-up to £28 million signing Romelu Lukaku at Goodison Park.
The Daily Mirror reports that the Toffees would need to make Eto'o their highest paid player for an agreement to be reached, which seems highly unlikely considering that he'll only play a bit-part role in the team.