Ross Barkley seems intent on pricing himself out of a rumoured Tottenham Hotspur move by reportedly demanding £150,000-a-week salary.
The Everton contract rebel has been touted with moving to the capital this summer as interest from Spurs supposedly gathers pace, but any deal to take him to north London has already been scuppered by the Toffees' alleged £50m asking price.
Now, the Daily Mirror has reported that Barkley's wage demands are adding further complications to the already lengthy transfer discussions, with his salary request £30,000-a-week greater than current Tottenham top-earners Harry Kane and Hugo Lloris.
Tottenham are known for running a tight ship when it comes to the wages they pay their first-team stars, and will have baulked at Barkley's call to make him their highest-ever earner.
The Lilywhites have already been left reeling by Everton's price tag, and do not believe that the playmaker should cost them any more than £15m given that he only has one year left to run on his Blues' contract.
Everton, though, are determined to get their money's worth for their academy graduate, and seemed set on giving Spurs a taste of their own medicine when it comes to asking for a significant transfer fee for a wantaway player.
Barkley's future at Goodison Park has been debated about at length since the end of the season, with the 23-year-old still yet to give manager Ronald Koeman a definitive answer over where his career in England lies.
Koeman had given Barkley an ultimatum over either penning the new deal on the table or risk being sold in the summer, and the Dutchman has made his position even clearer by the summer business he has conducted.
The ex-Southampton boss has already drafted in £24m ex-Ajax star Davy Klaassen as a Barkley replacement in midfield, and is still keen to bring £50m-rated Swansea talisman Gylfi Sigurdsson to Merseyside.
Barkley will know that his gametime with the Toffees will be lessened even further if Sigurdsson rocks up in L4, and it remains to be seen whether he will stay at the club beyond the end of the window.
The England international is yet to feature for the Blues this pre-season as he continues to nurse a groin strain after returning from his summer vacation.