The mystery surrounding Mikael Forssell's abortive attempt to join Everton cleared yesterday when the Merseysiders confirmed the striker had failed a medical with them - several days before Birmingham City agreed to bring him back to St Andrew's.
At the start of last week David Moyes's club seemed set to complete a £4.5 million deal for the Finland international but went cold on the transfer claiming concerns over the 24-year-old's fitness.
Forssell, then with Chelsea, had missed most of last season after undergoing surgery for knee ligament damage - a problem that ended his loan spell at St Andrew's in September - and doubts about the effectiveness of the procedure shook their conviction.
Everton assistant manager Alan Irvine said: "Obviously, Mikael Forssell failed his medical and so we can't commit ourselves to spending a great deal of money on a player, and then of course on his wages, if we don't think he's going to be able to play.
"Our medical people made the decision that he wasn't fit enough to be as expensive as he was going to be. Perhaps if he wasn't going to be costing that kind of money then the decision would have been different."
Blues do, too, and obviously have no doubts about Forssell's ability to recapture the form of two seasons ago when he scored 19 goals and fired them to a best league position for more than three decades.
The club remained adamant yesterday that the forward, for whom they spent £3 million last Friday, had not taken any such medical examination at Goodison Park.
Everton are unhappy to have been outbid by Blues for a player with a proven Premiership track record.
The Midlanders view Forssell's capture as something of a coup given that eight other top-flight teams were willing to risk parting with serious money for a man who has played only seven Premiership matches in a year.
Blues, meanwhile, are hoping their pursuit of Lee Bowyer is equally successful. They are expecting the Newcastle United midfielder to make a decision over a proposed move to St Andrew's by the end of the week.
One man who will not be coming to Birmingham, though, is Forssell's former Chelsea team-mate Scott Parker who yesterday agreed a £6.5 million transfer to Newcastle.
Aston Villa were also interested in the central midfielder but missed out on the 24-year-old who signed a fiveyear deal at St James' Park.
Villa are still waiting to find out whether Manchester City defender Sylvain Distin is free to leave. City are deep in debt and will need extra finance to replace Distin if he does move. That could come from the sale of Shaun Wright-Phillips.