Greek club Aris FC say they have ended their transfer pursuit of Fulham striker Eddie Johnson after signing his former FC Dallas running mate Carlos Ruiz on Monday.
The club had been trying to land the 26-year-old US international on a permanent switch since his loan deal with the Greek club expired last month, but the Cottagers' price tag forced them to shop for a cheaper option.
"Fulham was asking too much money," Aris press officer Christanthos Tsaltidis plainly told MLSsoccer.com, admitting that the capture of Ruiz also meant the end of their Johnson chase.
Johnson, who scored eight goals on loan with Aris last season, reportedly could soon have his future decided by US national team coach Bob Bradley. On Tuesday, The Sun tabloid named the American coach as the frontrunner for Fulham's open manager's job.
Meanwhile back in Greece, Aris are still trying to re-work Freddy Adu's loan contract to retain him from Benfica at a lower cost.
"He is practicing alone in Thessaloniki," said Tsaltidis. "He is still with the club. He has one year left on his contract here. We are trying to find a solution."
Aris, who find out their Europa League third round qualifying opponent on Friday, will open the new Greek Super League season with a visit to Kavala on August 28.