Southampton insist Manchester United target Sadio Mane is not for sale.
In a surprise development, United sources claimed on Wednesday that the club made a bid to sign Mane last week.
Southampton deny any offer has been submitted for the Senegalese winger, but a spokesman for the south-coast club said Mane is "not for sale" anyway.
Despite making five signings this summer, United manager Louis van Gaal believes his squad lack pace and creativity, and Mane certainly has both those qualities in abundance.
Southampton signed the 23-year-old from Red Bull Salzburg last summer for £10million.
In his first year at Saints he scored 10 goals in 32 appearances, including the fastest hat-trick in Premier League history in the 6-1 win over Aston Villa.
The move for the player still comes as something of a surprise, however.
United were reported to be close to the capture of Barcelona forward Pedro last week, but it emerged on Wednesday the club had pulled out of the running to sign the 28-year-old.
Sources at Old Trafford claim Van Gaal decided to abandon a bid to sign the Canary Islander after doubts emerged regarding whether he wanted to move to the 20-time English champions.
Pedro now looks set to move to Chelsea instead.
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