Manchester United have decided against paying off the remaining six months of Anderson's contract if they fail to find a buyer for him in January, and will allow the midfield misfit to leave Old Trafford on a free transfer next summer.
According to The Guardian, Red Devils boss Louis van Gaal is unwilling to honour the rest of the Brazilian's deal in one go, and would rather retain the player's services for the duration of the 2014/15 campaign.
The Independent reported last month that Anderson earns £60,000-a-week at Manchester United, meaning the Premier League giants would have to fork out around £1.4 million to get the former FC Porto star to walk away in the New Year.
Van Gaal feels the money could be better spent elsewhere, and is happy to keep the South American on the books as a back-up option for the first-team for the rest of the season.
The 26-year-old has become an increasingly peripheral figure at Old Trafford and spent the second half of last season on loan in Italy with Serie 'A' outfit Fiorentina, who ultimately decided against making his move to Stadio Artemio Franchi permanent after an underwhelming stint in Tuscany.
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Anderson had hoped that the appointment of Van Gaal would hand him a fresh chance to get back in the senior fold at Manchester United, but the summer arrival of players like Daley Blind and Ander Herrera have further limited his opportunities.
He's made just two appearances under the Dutch coach's tutelage this term, playing in the shock 4-0 defeat against MK Dons in the Capital One Cup back in August, and then making a 20-minute substitute appearance in the goalless Premier League draw with Burnley at Turf Moor four days later.
Once his inevitable departure eventually occurs, Anderson will probably be regarded as one of Sir Alex Ferguson's biggest transfer failures, after paying £20 million to bring him to England in 2007, and spending another £6 million on wages for the midfield flop by the time his contract expires in the summer of 2015.
Anderson is not the only midfielder facing an uncertain future at Old Trafford, though, with vice-captain Darren Fletcher also about to enter the final six months of his current deal, meaning he could depart on a Bosman free at the end of the season as well.