He arrived in a blaze of glory less than a month ago, but 192 minutes and one goal later Grant Holt is no longer a King’s Lynn Town player.
The early-October love affair was brought to an abrupt end on Saturday evening when the Linnets called an impromptu press conference minutes after their home defeat to Chesham United in the Southern League.
Lynn claimed that the 36-year-old was joining National League outfit Barrow, but the Cumbrian club responded by saying that no deal had been agreed and that Lynn had “misinterpreted” their approach.
Linnets chairman Stephen Cleeve said Barrow had informed them on Monday that they had completed a deal to sign Holt.
He claimed that a compensation package had subsequently been agreed between the clubs, only for Barrow to then scrap the deal on Thursday.
And he said a formal seven-day approach was submitted on Thursday, meaning it is likely to be later this week before Holt formally signs for them.
Cleeve said: “I think Barrow haven’t behaved in the right way. Normally clubs do the right thing. I don’t think Barrow have done the right thing.
“I thrashed out a deal with Barrow which gave us a very minimal compensation agreement which was agreed with their managing director.
“They then reversed that decision, once the managing director had spoken to their manager, for an unknown reason, and therefore they were not offering any compensation of any sort.
“We are not talking hundreds, we are not even talking a thousand pounds, it was a tiny amount of money.”
Cleeve admitted that he was bitterly disappointed to see Holt head out of the exit door.
“We went through a lot of hoops to bring Grant in,” said Cleeve.
“I was obviously a little bit surprised, because we thought we’d done a deal for the season for him, but when players are not on contract, of course, these things happen.
“He’s decided he wants to go there. They’ve offered him more money. They’ve offered him a longer-term deal and there’s nothing I can do about it.
“But I wish Grant well. I don’t want to stand in his way. He thinks he is better off going up there as opposed to learning under Ian then fine, good luck to him.”
Barrow issued a statement on Saturday night saying: “Barrow AFC can confirm that we approached King’s Lynn Town regarding the availability of Grant Holt.
“Conversations have taken place between our manager Ady Pennock and the King’s Lynn management team, as well as at board room level.
“However, no terms have been agreed and no deal has been signed for him to join us. We look forward to speaking to Grant at the end of the mandatory notice period.”
The former Norwich City and Wigan striker only arrived at the Walks on October 9, signing on the same day as another ex-Norwich player, Simon Lappin.
If the move does go through, it will mark a return to the club Holt scored for 35 times in 69 appearances during two spells between 2001 and 2003.
The Holker Street side are currently 21st in the National League, and appointed former Gillingham, Forest Green Rovers and Welling United boss Pennock as manager last month.