Salford Red Devils scrum-half Theo Fages has handed in a transfer request after turning down a new contract to stay at the club.
However, the club’s owner Dr Marwan Koukash is demanding a world record transfer fee for the 20 year-old.
“Theo did hand in a transfer request,” said Koukash. “But if anybody wants to buy him it would have to be for a world-record transfer. He is the hottest property in Super League.
“He has 18 months left to run on his contract and we will ask him to see it out.”
New Zealand Warriors paid Wigan £700,000 to sign Sam Tomkins two years ago, which is the current record transfer fee.
The French international has spent four years with Salford, making 56 Super League appearances for the Red Devils.
Fages has started the last seven league games, all of which have ended in defeat.
Koukash also confirmed that the club offered Fages a deal to keep him at the AJ Bell Stadium, but the player wants to leave the club: “We spoke a few months ago when he asked for a certain figure and we actually offered him more than that.”
“We offered him two more years and enhanced terms for this year and next year.
“We thought he had accepted it but maybe he hadn’t consulted his agent, who is the same agent who acted for Sean Long and Gareth Hock.
“He has made it clear he doesn’t want to discuss a new offer and only wants a move from the club.
Catalan Dragons and St Helens are thought to be interested in acquiring the services of Fages, but Koukash remains hopeful the talented half-back will have a change of heart and stay with the Red Devils: “I still hope he will reconsider his position and stick with the club I’m sure he still loves.,” he said.