Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney has been linked with an exit from the club since the summer - with Chelsea one team who most definitely made a bid, or two, for the player in the summer.
Today his name is being linked with an exit again as Chelsea look to offer a Juan Mata shaped makeweight into a deal to snap up the England international - and they also want a sizeable chunk of money for the Spanish international.
It looks as if Mata is finally on his way out of the club - after growing tired of his substitute role under the management of Jose Mourinho - with Manchester United and Atletico Madrid the reported favourites to cement his signature.
But for United losing Rooney for the privilege of Mata certainly makes no sense. Rooney has been arguably, no scrap that, undoubtedly United’s best player this season - a season that has been torture for the fans.
The struggling campaign certainly threatens Rooney’s apparent fragile relationship with the club - as he is unlikely to consider staying with a team not playing Champions League football - something far from guaranteed at Old Trafford.
And now an old foe has entered the frame - as Real Madrid are said to be taking an interest in the player.
Real have previous - signing David Beckham, Ruud van Nistelrooy and Cristiano Ronaldo from the club in the past. Now, according to several sources this morning, Real want to sign Rooney for £25 million in the summer.
But one expert who certainly knows a thing or two on this subject has made it very clear what he thinks of the rumour.
Not a chance is the message from Spanish football expert Guillem Balague.
The Sky Sports pundit, usually a reliable source for all things transfer related on the Iberian peninsula, has Tweeted this message to his followers - which should make the United fans among them rest easy … for now.
Real Madrid have no interest whatsoever in Wayne Rooney. Zero interest.— Guillem Balague (@GuillemBalague) January 22, 2014
image: © joncandy