Newcastle's quest to replace Yohan Cabaye hit a roadblock after Clement Grenier ruled himself out of the running, after the English Premier League club reportedly had a bid rejected by French club Lyon on Thursday.
Alan Pardew is desperate to find a playmaker capable of playing behind the striker before the January transfer window shuts, and had zeroed in on the French international, with the Newcastle manager sounding reasonably confident of getting a deal done.
"I don't know. We have two days left and we will have to wait and see," Pardew said. "I'm obviously hopeful.
"He [Grenier] has tremendous creative technical ability and he's a player that Newcastle fans would love to see at the football club.
"But he's still not our player, so until he is... I will wax lyrical about him then."
However, Grenier's agent Frederic Guerra poured ice-cold water over a move being completed, claiming his client was not keen to sign for Newcastle as a replacement for Cabaye, who joined PSG earlier this week.
"It is not easy to say no to a big club like Newcastle but Clement is finally decided to stay in Lyon," Guerra told Le 10 Sport.
"Clement would have arrived at Newcastle -- not as Clement Grenier but as Yohan Cabaye's replacement.
"I have the upmost respect for a player of Cabaye's quality. But who deserves to have that tag? As his agent I ask is he worth half the price of Cabaye?
"For all those reasons it has led us to decline the offer from Newcastle. The conditions of the deal did not seem fair."
Grenier was heavily linked with a move to Arsenal last summer, with the French playmaker flirting with a move to the Emirates before deciding to stay with Lyon.
Newcastle's other options are, not surprisingly, again from the French Ligue 1, with Remy Cabella of Montpellier and Gregory Sertic of Bordeaux on their radar.
Cabella has been heavily linked with a move to the Magpies, with some reports recently even suggesting the Premier League side had a deal in place for the summer.
Sertic is having a terrific season with Bordeaux, and is another candidate that could fit right in at St. James' Park.