Barcelona forward Lionel Messi has reportedly turned down a move to Anzhi Makhachkala following the Russian club’s 250 million-euro bid.
The Argentine was said to have been offered a 560,000 euro-a-week, five-year deal but has rejected their advances.
The contract would have made Messi the highest-paid player in football, netting the 25-year-old around 30 million euros per year after tax.
Former Barca striker Samuel Eto’o, who now plays for Anzhi, holds that title at the moment, earning a reported 20 million per season.
Messi, who has scored 91 goals in this calendar year, recently signed a two-year contract extension that ties him to La Liga leaders Barca until 2018.
Meanwhile, Messi’s team-mate David Villa’s been linked to Premier League sides Arsenal and Chelsea, amid speculation the Spaniard is looking to leave the Camp Nou.
In other transfer rumours, Manchester United are reportedly closing in on the signing of Borussia Dortmund striker Robert Lewandowski for 18 million pounds.
However, Alex Ferguson may have to wait until the end of the season to complete a deal for the Poland international.
Atletico Madrid’s Radamel Falcao has distanced himself from rumours linking him with a January move to Chelsea.
Finally, Los Angeles Galaxy, AC Milan and Santos are all in the hunt to sign Real Madrid’s out-of-favour playmaker Kaka.