CHELSEA wanted a £5million loan fee and Antonio Rudiger's entire £150,000-a-week wages to be paid during the summer window, reports say.
The German centre-back looked for a late move away from Stamford Bridge having been frozen out of Frank Lampard's squad this season.
But according to The Athletic, clubs were put off by the cost of taking Rudiger on loan.
With Chelsea not offering to pay any of the 27-year-old's wages combined with the loan fee, it would have cost £12.5m to sign the defender.
Rudiger did attract interest from London rivals Tottenham and West Ham as well as AC Milan, Inter Milan, Roma and Barcelona.
But he will instead stay a fight for his place, but has so far managed to make the bench on just one occasion this season.
Chelsea signed Thiago Silva, 36, this summer on a free transfer after the Brazilian left PSG.
Kurt Zouma, 25, Andreas Christensen, 24 and Fikayo Tomori, 22, are also competing for a space next in the Blues' backline.
Tomori was close to joining Everton on loan, but for the second summer running the deal collapsed.
He too pulled out of joining the Hammers to instead compete for his spot in the squad.
Team-mate Rudiger may be given a lifeline after Chelsea's defensive errors saw them twice throw a lead to draw 3-3 against Southampton on Saturday.
It came before the he opened up about opting to stay in West London despite facing an uncertain future.
Rudiger told The Athletic: “Naturally, I looked at a couple of options in the two weeks before the end of the transfer window.
“There was a possibility of a loan deal, in order for me to get more game time.
“Due to many different reasons and the shortage of time, nothing materialised in the end.
“The club didn’t tell me that it was absolutely necessary for me to find a new club and that they definitely didn’t have me in their plans for the next few months.
“I also turned down one or two options myself. I wasn’t prepared to pack it all in simply because I had been left out a few times.
“I enjoy living in London and like being at Chelsea.”