Marouane Fellaini has told Jose Mourinho that he wants a new challenge not a new contract as he heads for the Old Trafford exit door.
The big Belgian has turned down a new deal to stay at Manchester United and is now free to negotiate with clubs abroad about a move in the summer.
Manchester United boss Mourinho aims to use time at this week’s warm weather training base in Dubai to convince Fellaini that a big challenge still lies at United.
But as it stands Fellaini wants to move on to a new club.
While he can negotiate with clubs abroad now he can also dictate his own terms with other Premier League sides when his current deal expires in the summer.
The 30-year-old turned down a new deal in September.
The new two year deal – a year plus a year’s extension – was on similar basic terms that he is currently on of £120,000 a week but with a greater incentive package.
There will be no new improved offer on the table.
Fellaini made his first appearance for United since November 25th as a late substitute in the 2-0 win over Derby County in the FA third round tie at Old Trafford last Friday.
He had not featured in the previous 11 games due to a knee injury.
While Mourinho bemoaned Fellaini’s absence and his publicly talked up his worth to United, the player himself does not feel he gets enough game time.
Of his 13 appearances for the club this season only four have been as a starter.
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He also feels genuinely undervalued in the English game.
Fellaini’s decision to move on comes at a time when the fans have actually come round to him following a difficult first three years up to last season.
He was the club’s first big signing post Sir Alex Ferguson when David Moyes returned to his former club Everton to land him for £27.5million.
But he became synonymous with the failing’s under Moyes.
He only seemed to be used by subsequent boss Louis van Gaal for the long ball when all hope was lost in games.
He had his most productive spell in a United shirt last season making 47 appearances, playing a crucial role in particular in the club’s Europa League triumph.