Bayern Munich defender Javi Martinez's proposed return to Athletic Club is on the verge of collapsing.
Martinez joined Bayern from Athletic in 2012 and after eight trophy-filled years in Bavaria, the 32-year-old is hoping for a return to the Basque club - but Goal and SPOX understand that the move is in serious jeopardy over the proposed termination of Martinez's Bayern contract, which has entered its final season
Athletic are counting on Bayern and Martinez reaching an agreement over the cancellation of his contract, which would allow the Spaniard to then join them on a free transfer.
Bayern, though, are holding out for a fee of around €10 million (£9m/$12) and appear unwilling to negotiate a termination of Martinez's deal.
Should Martinez not require a transfer fee, Athletic believe they have the required funds to invest in a salary that would successfully lure their former player back.
However, the Liga club won't be able to put together a competitive contract offer for Martinez should they also be required to invest in a transfer fee.
Martinez also has interest from Real Sociedad, as well as clubs in Saudi Arabia and China that could offer him a much more lucrative deal than either Liga side.
He missed Bayern's traditional Oktoberfest photo shoot on Tuesday, prompting speculation that he had secured a transfer away from the German champions. On Wednesday, however, Martinez was named in the squad for Bayern's UEFA Super Cup match against Sevilla on Thursday.
Bayern head coach Hansi Flick said on Wednesday that he wasn't completely certain of Martinez's situation, but was happy to have him as an option for the match in Budapest.
"I can't always quite understand things," Flick said. "I was also a bit surprised that Javi Martínez was already gone, even though he is still in our squad. I'm glad Javi is here."
Martinez has been a valuable option for Bayern since his arrival in 2012, filling in at centre-back and in central midfield, but the veteran has seen his role reduced lately and made just 10 starts in all competitions in 2019-20.
Last month, Bayern chief executive Karl-Heinz Rummenigge confirmed that Martinez was looking to leave the club.