Steven Pienaar was no closer to joining Tottenham or Chelsea today, with neither club having thrashed out a deal to sign the Everton midfielder.
Spurs remained at loggerheads with the Toffees over a transfer fee, while there was no sign of Pienaar reaching an agreement with Chelsea over his wage demands.
Tottenham look favourites to land the 28-year-old, who missed yesterday's Merseyside derby after telling Everton boss David Moyes he was not in the right frame of mind to play.
Spurs' offer of £2million for the player, whose contract expires in the summer, has been rejected with his current club holding out for £3million.
That is the amount they are understood to have accepted from Chelsea, although reports today suggest a compromise figure of £2.5million could be reached with Tottenham by the end of the week.
Everton are holding out for as much money as possible to allow Moyes to reinvest in his side, particularly in attack.
The sale of Pienaar, who cost them £2million from Borussia Dortmund in 2008, could prove decisive on that front.
Spurs have led the chase for the South Africa star for some time and had considered a pre-contract deal that would see them land him on a free transfer in the summer.
Chelsea's bid threw a spanner in the works, with the champions keen to bolster a squad that failed to cope with injuries to key midfielders Frank Lampard and Michael Essien earlier this season.
Tottenham have an embarrassment of riches in that position, having handled their own injury problems well, but Pienaar's all-action approach might give them something different.
It may also convince manager Harry Redknapp to sell Niko Kranjcar, who has fallen down the pecking order at White Hart Lane and has previously expressed a desire for first-team football.
Redknapp hinted after his side's goalless Barclays Premier League draw with Manchester United yesterday that Spurs were unlikely to match Chelsea's bid.
"If they've accepted an offer from Chelsea, £3million, I don't know if we would be prepared to match that offer, I doubt it very much," he said.
"I'd think if Chelsea are coming in, the wages they would pay would be far in excess of what we would pay."
Moyes expected Pienaar to be at training this morning.
"He will be in training because at the moment we don't have a deal," he said.
"If Tottenham offer the same money, that may change or maybe he will agree terms with Chelsea.
"We've given his representatives a chance to talk to Chelsea but they've not got permission to talk to Tottenham because they've not offered the same money."Reuse content