West Brom striker Nicolas Anelka has been given permission to miss Saturday's Barclays Premier League clash with Everton on "compassionate grounds", the club have announced.
Reports have emerged revealing that Anelka, who has played just one match for the Baggies, walked out of training on Thursday and told staff that he might retire.
A statement on West Brom's official website read: "The club have excused the striker from club duty on compassionate grounds."
Anelka joined West Brom on a free transfer in July having completed a loan spell at Juventus when his big-money move to Chinese club Shanghai Shenhua turned sour.
The temperamental 34-year-old, who numbers Arsenal, Liverpool and Chelsea among his former clubs, made his West Brom debut in Saturday's 1-0 home defeat by Southampton.
The Baggies issued their statement in response to reports of Anelka walking out of training, although the club have been unavailable for further comment.