Gabriel Heinze has lost his attempt to force a move from Manchester United to rivals Liverpool.
United disputed claims from Heinze who said the club had given him written permission to join another club if they stumped up a fee of £6.8m.
The matter was referred to a Premier League arbitration panel which concluded that the written letter Heinze possessed “was unambiguous in that it envisages only an international transfer”.
“The hearing concluded that nature and intention of the disputed June 13 2007 letter, especially when taken in context of verbal discussions and Manchester United’s transfer policy, was unambiguous in that it envisages only an international transfer,” read a Premier League statement.
“Furthermore the hearing finds the letter constitutes an ‘agreement to agree’, and did not create an obligation or binding agreement for the club to transfer the player to any particular club.
“In other words the letter is evidence of an intention to negotiate, both between the parties and with potential buying clubs, and not evidence of any intention to create legal relations.”
Heinze has the right to appeal against the decision, although with the transfer window due to shut on 31 August, he is running out of time if he wishes to secure a move away from Old Trafford.