Fulham manager Slavisa Jokanovic claims they have rejected a club-record bid of £20million for midfielder Tom Cairney from Newcastle.
Cairney was one of the best performers in the Championship this past season and has earned plenty of admiring glances as the Cottagers reached the play-offs, only to narrowly miss out to Reading in the semi-finals.
The 26-year-old was linked with Aston Villa in January, but Newcastle have emerged as genuine contenders to sign the player following their return to the Premier League.
But Jokanovic claims that he has already turned down a £20m move from Newcastle – more than the Magpies’ current record outlay which is the £16m spent on Michael Owen in 2005.
“He [Rafa Benitez] asked for him and they offered £20m, but we didn’t let him go,” he said. “He’s not for Newcastle, there is no business there. He fits in at Fulham.
“When the team has problems, the ball always goes to him and he keeps it.”
Cairney himself discussed leaving Craven Cottage earlier in the season.
“Every player has to back themselves to play at that level and I believe once I get there — and I hope it’s with Fulham — I really will show I can do things at that level,” he said.
“It’s all about getting there in the first place, but I do think it does suit my game.”