Chinese Super League outfit Tianjin Quanjian have denied reports they are set to renew their interest in Borussia Dortmund star Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
Aubameyang was tipped to leave Dortmund in the off-season after considering an approach from China, while the Gabon international was also linked with AC Milan, before deciding to stay at the Bundesliga side.
Quanjian – coached by former Italy, Juventus and Real Madrid defender Fabio Cannavaro – were keen on Aubameyang and came close to signing the 28-year-old, who has scored seven goals in all competitions this term, but the CSL club will not make another move in January.
"It is out of the question," owner Shu Yuhui told reporters. "We were within touching distance of bringing in Aubameyang, but it didn't work out. It's a great shame. Case closed!
"It is immoral to poach Dortmund's star striker when the new season of Bundesliga kicked off only a few weeks ago. I definitely won't do that.
"In addition, the Chinese Football Association have put much stress on rational investment [in buying foreign players]. We will absolutely respect their advice."
Quanjian – who already boast Axel Witsel and Alexandre Pato – are fourth in the CSL, 13 points behind leaders and defending champions Guangzhou Evergrande Taobao.