Mexican club Toluca confirmed they had been targeted by a hoax after a statement appeared online claiming legal action against Luuk de Jong was being considered.
De Jong has reportedly ruled out the idea of a move to Liga MX, and Toluca have said he will not be joining them.
The 31-year-old Dutch striker spent last season on loan at Barcelona from Sevilla, largely featuring as a fringe member of the Camp Nou giants’ squad.
A statement was published on social media that was purported to have come from Toluca, in which it was claimed that a deal for De Jong had been agreed with the player and Sevilla.
It went on to claim that De Jong subsequently did not travel to Mexico, was not answering the calls of club owner Valentin Diez, and had decided against making the move.
The same statement said that Toluca, supported by Liga MX officials, were looking at what legal options were available to them, signing off with the remark: «Nobody is going to make fun of Toluca and Mexican football.»
Toluca stressed on Saturday the statement was a fake, issuing a rebuttal through the club’s Twitter account that stated: «Our fans and the general public are informed that official announcements will always be published on our official Toluca FC accounts and website.»
It contained a picture of the statement, with a thick red line running through it and the word ‘FALSO!’, which translates as ‘fake’.
Addressing transfer reports, Toluca technical director Ignacio Ambriz was quoted by local media on Friday as saying: «Doors were knocked on, but there are no contracts signed with any of them.»