Why Genk’s record offer for Southampton striker fell apart

In an interview with HLN, Genk sporting director Dimitri de Conde has revealed why the deal with Southampton to bring former striker Paul Onuachu back to Belgium fell apart. While it was known that Joseph Paintsil had made it clear he preferred to remain in Belgium than join the Championship side, de Conde has also revealed that the Saints began to change the nature of the deal.

Genk had been prepared to make the signing of Onuachu the sides most expensive transfer in club history. However, the English side, who also own French outfit Valenciennes, wanted the deal to include the transfer for midfielder Aziz Ouattara to France. This came after Paintsil had refused the swap deal and Genk had put up the requested amount for Onuachu. When the new requirements of the deal were given to De Conde, he decided to pull the plug. The Genk sporting director said ‘If we had agreed to that, we would have been in trouble in two years. Not nice, because Paul wanted to come back. He didn’t sleep for three nights’.

In the end, Onuachu was loaned out to Turkish side Trabzonspor, where he has scored four goals in seven league games. He will be hoping to reignite his career after 12 goalless Premier League games for Southampton. Before leaving Belgium, Onuachu had scored 85 goals in 134 games for Genk.

GBeNeFN | Ben Jackson

More European Football News