Leicester today warned Stade Francais they will not be railroaded into allowing scrum-half Julien Dupuy to leave Welford Road.
Harry Ellis may be gearing up for a Lions tour after establishing himself as England's first choice number nine but Dupuy is preferred by the double-chasing Tigers.
The Frenchman started ahead of Ellis in Leicester's last three matches and is set to keep his place in Saturday's Guinness Premiership final against London Irish.
His form has attracted Stade's attention but Tigers head coach Richard Cockerill insists he must complete the remaining year on his contract if their search for an alternative fails.
"Stade would like to buy Julien out of his contract," he said. "If we could find a suitable replacement that would be an option but if not then he will stay here. We're a big club and will not get rolled over.
"His girlfriend wants to be in France and Julien wants to be here playing rugby for us. It's a personal, not rugby issue.
"It's not ideal. He signed a two-year deal and was second choice at Biarritz when he arrived. We honour our contracts and sometimes players have to do the same. He understands that - it's not a heated discussion we're having.
"Why let your best players leave when you don't have to? We're looking at someone to replace Julien but who's as good he is and is available?"