Belgium international midfielder Axel Witsel has been offered to Manchester United ahead of the transfer window deadline in the Premier League, despite claims that the 29-year-old should already be a Borussia Dortmund player.
Witsel plays his club football in the Chinese Super League with Tianjin Quanjian, and he was one of the first high profile players that migrated to the CSL along with the likes of Oscar, Yannick Carrasco and current teammate Alexandre Pato.
The midfielder has just one year left on his contract but he is pushing for a move back to Europe this summer, and Bundesliga giants Borussia Dortmund have already met Witsel's reported €20m release clause.
However, Bild have reported that Tianjin Quanjian are denying that there is a release clause in Witsel's contract, contrary to the beliefs of both the player and Borussia Dortmund.
Axel Witsel said to be heading to Borussia Dortmund at the age of 29 and almost 100 international caps after a somewhat circuitous journey to one of the 'Big Five' leagues.— John Chapman (@BelgoFoot) July 30, 2018
The Chinese side have supposedly contacted Manchester United as they look to offload the midfielder for more than €20m, but considering Witsel was supposed to fly into Dortmund to complete his medical on Monday, there is a strong possibility that the transfer dispute could be taken to FIFA.
Despite being offered to the decision makers at Old Trafford, manager José Mourinho will almost certainly veto the move as his priorities appear to lay in strengthening the club's defence - let alone the chaos which will ensue if Borussia Dortmund consults FIFA over the move.
Witsel's club could land themselves in seriously hot water if it turns out that they are simply ignoring the player's release clause. Similar problems could also arise if teams look to sign one of Tianjin Quanjian's other star players, namely the aforementioned Pato or former FC Köln striker Anthony Modeste.