Talks between Steven Pienaar and Chelsea have reportedly broken down and the Everton midfielder is set to sign for a major European club.
The South Africa international’s current contract at Everton expires at the end of the season and he now appears certain to leave Goodison Park.
The Toffees had given Pienaar permission to hold talks with Chelsea regarding a potential move to Stamford Bridge this month.
However, Pienaar was unable to agree terms with the Premier League champions and Sky Sports understands the former Borussia Dortmund player is set to sign a pre-contract agreement before heading back to the continent.
Atletico Madrid and Inter Milan are among the clubs to have been linked with the 28-year-old, and he is expected to finalise a pre-contract deal with a pre-eminent European side within the next 48 hours.
Pienaar’s move abroad will also dash Tottenham’s hopes of signing the schemer after Harry Redknapp acknowledged his interest earlier in the week.
His impending departure from Everton in the summer will also leave manager David Moyes with a creative hole to fill in his side.
Since joining Everton from Dortmund in 2007, Pienaar has scored 12 goals in 132 appearances for the club.