The Obafemi Martins-transfer saga looks like it will drag on for at least a few more days, as the latest reports suggest nothing will be finalized until Monday at the earliest. Nothing from the MLS side, Seattle Sounders’ end suggests they are preparing to walk away, but it does appear as though Levante are doing everything in their power to drag this out as long as they can.
Wading through the various reports makes it tough to figure out exactly what is happening, but the Levante president told media on Friday that they have stepped away from the negotiations.
Sounders Sporting Director Chris Henderson has also reportedly returned. That seems to suggest negotiations are almost entirely being done between the leagues and their lawyers.
The Nigerian star, Martins has an exit clause in his contract that is triggered if any team is willing to pay the roughly $4 million fee.
The Sounders apparently offered that money to Levante, but the board turned it down. The team’s president told reporters that they turned it down for “sporting” reasons, as they have no real way of replacing their leading scorer at this point in the season.
The MLS clubside can still trigger the exit clause, but they’ll have to pay the money to the league instead. They may also have to pay the equivalent of nearly $800,000 in taxes. It’s unclear if that amount would be in addition to the $4 million transfer fee.