Manchester City boss Stuart Pearce has confirmed that his efforts to sign Tottenham Hotspur striker Mido were thwarted just minutes before the transfer window slammed shut.
The Egypt frontman had been lined up to boost the Citizens' strikeforce, but Spurs head coach Martin Jol decided against letting his player move on straight after the Carling Cup semi-final defeat at Arsenal.
Pearce said: "There was a bit of toing and froing between 5pm and 11pm, but we were led to believe the deal was virtually agreed.
"The work permits had all been sorted out and the doctor was down there waiting to do a medical, which tells you how advanced we thought it all was.
"Then we get a call at 11.30 to say Tottenham were pulling out. It was a bit of a bolt from the blue, that's for sure.
"We were told it was Martin Jol's decision, but he is the manager of the club - that is what he is paid to do.
"We sat in the secretary's office at 1am, by which time we had hoped to have at least one or two more players through the door.
"We looked at a lot of things and everything crossed our minds. But in the end it is very difficult to persuade clubs to sell their best players and events conspired against us."