HERITIER Lumumba may have played his last game for Collingwood after he reacted to a 'joke' posted on the players' noticeboard that he perceived to be homophobic.
Discussions to resolve the issue have reached a point where both the club and the player are considering whether they might be better off parting ways.
Collingwood has refused to comment on the matter and Lumumba's manager Ben Niall has said that all parties need to take a break before committing to any course of action.
Lumumba, who has played 199 games with Collingwood and was a member of the Magpies' 2010 premiership team, is contracted for next year.
The latest flare-up is understood to have come when Lumumba indicated he was offended by a poster, which included a handwritten note next to a picture of Scott Pendlebury and Dayne Beams that said, 'Off to the Mardi Gras Boys’.
Players were spoken to and club officials, including Nathan Buckley, were prepared to work through the issue with Lumumba to resolve it.
However subsequent discussions made Collingwood suggest to Lumumba that it may be better for both parties if he changed clubs.
Niall has indicated that the best immediate course of action for both parties was to take a break to enable decisions to be made after rest and with a clear head.
Niall told Fairfax that Lumumba loves Collingwood and respects Buckley but understands a decision about his future needs to be made.
"He acknowledges that the way he expresses himself at times can be problematic and he needs to modify how he expresses himself going forward whether that is at Collingwood or at another club," Niall said.
"Both parties are going to spend some time thinking about what they do from here. Do they both decide they can work through this or is it time to go their own way and maybe he has to move to a new club?
"Heritier can decide to stay if he wants and he is a contracted player and the club has said go away and think about whether you want to stay and commit to Nathan Buckley and the Leading Teams system or do you decide at the end it's time to open a new chapter at a new club?"
Buckley was a teammate with Lumumba and the two have had a close relationship for many years.
That relationship was tested last year when Lumumba took a short break from the club after an argument with Buckley, however they resolved that issue at the time.
Lumumba, 27, has been in good form for the past two seasons averaging 20 possessions playing in defence and on the wing.