Bayer Leverkusen have warned Manchester United off midfielder Lars Bender.

Bayer have reacted swiftly and decisively to having their Germany midfielder watched by United and Arsenal in recent weeks and issued an emphatic hands-off warning.

"Quite simply, Lars is unsellable," declared chief executive Wolfgang Holzhauser to the Daily Mail. "After working so hard to put together a good team, the last thing we intend doing is allowing it to be weakened. That was our position when there was interest in Andre Schurrle in the summer, and it applies now with Lars."