Manchester City manager Mark Hughes has been told he is wasting his time trying to prise John Terry from Chelsea.
Such was the strong tone of the London club's rebuttal it appears Hughes will have to look elsewhere in an attempt to beef up his defence.
Joleon Lescott has been linked with a move to Eastlands but Everton's response should an approach be made is likely to be the same as Chelsea's.
The size of the offer made by City was not revealed in a statement from Chelsea this morning, however officials sought to end any further interest saying they would "not entertain any conversation on the subject".
City made a bid for the 28-year-old defender last season when they were also given short shrift.
"We can confirm we have completely rejected an offer from Manchester City for John Terry," a statement on Chelsea's website read.
"It was made clear to City, for a second time following an approach last season, that we would not entertain any conversation on the subject.
"At the time, John also reiterated his total commitment to Chelsea.
"We would like to make it clear, and will not do so again, that John is not for sale."
Hughes is looking to do more business at the top end of the transfer market after securing the services of Roque Santa Cruz and Gareth Barry.
In addition to Terry, the former Blackburn boss is also keeping tabs on strikers Samuel Eto'o and Carlos Tevez.
City have riches at their disposal and winger Shaun Wright-Phillips has seen a significant change in the landscape.
He returned to the club for a second stint last August following a brief spell at Chelsea.
Wright-Phillips told http://www.mcfc.co.uk: "On the day I came back we stayed in the UEFA Cup through a last-minute own goal against Midtjylland, then won a dramatic penalty shoot-out.
"That made me smile. I've been here that long that I'm used to that being the way with City.
"It was always like that when I was coming through the ranks. We always liked to do the things the hard way, but hopefully the boss is slowly but surely getting that out of us now and this is a club geared for sustained success."
Wright-Phillips, now free from the knee injury that threatened to force him on to an operating table this summer, has set his sights on a place in England's World Cup squad in South Africa.
He admits that losing his berth in the 2006 party under Sven-Goran Eriksson, who put the then untried 17-year-old Theo Walcott ahead of him, was one of the low points of his career.
"I was gutted," he recalled. "I played a major part in the qualifying rounds because David Beckham was injured, and so to be left out was pretty confusing, but you learn something from those times in your career."