Groningen rejected a two-million-euro Manchester City offer to buy a stake in attacking midfielder Ritsu Doan, says the Dutch side’s technical director.
The Japan Under-20 international, 19, was this week officially transferred to Groningen from Gamba Osaka after spending a season playing for the Eredivisie team on loan.
He is now contracted to the club until 2021.
This season, Doan played a starring role for Groningen, scoring eight goals and supplying three assists.
Initially, Doan had to fight for his place at Groningen, but he quickly developed into one of the revelations of the Eredivisie.
His clever positional play and fast dribbles helped him stand out, leaving Groningen with the easy decision to seek to keep the Japanese starlet.
Discussing City’s offer, Ron Jans told De Telegraaf: "Now we have everything in our own hands.
"We said that we really liked it that they offered it, but we're doing it on our own. The connection with City is very positive.
"He has grown during the season and has become increasingly important for the team. A big compliment for the boy."
Doan is yet to make his first appearance for the Japan national team. However, after his latest performances, it wouldn’t be a shock to see him feature at the World Cup.