Arsenal's transfer pursuit has this Monday led them in the direction of Frenchman Yohan Cabaye, reportedly bidding around £10 million for the French international.
This bid was unsurprisingly knocked back by Newcastle, with Alan Pardew stating before the game the offer was 'unacceptable'.
But the tale has taken a twist after Cabaye was not included in the squad for the club's trip to Manchester City. Cabaye had been expected to start the game, but has not even made the bench.
Pardew said he 'had to pick a squad for tonight's game', intimating that the sought-after midfielder was not in the frame of mind to be considered.
There are seemingly no concerns over his fitness, so has Cabaye effectively gone on strike?
It is a bit of a leap perhaps to assume that for certain, from Pardew's comments, it appears clear that the midfielder is keen on a switch to a club that can, for now at least, offer Champions League football.
It's certainly positive for Arsenal, and a blow to Newcastle - but any transfer will come down to the Gunners meeting the Toon's asking price, likely to be in excess of £20 million.
Could this transfer come off? Or will the two clubs be too far apart in their valuations?
image: © Julien Haler