Somerfield has written to Office of Fair Trading for details of the 171 stores from its1300-strong Somerfield and Kwik Save chain that Sainsbury wants clearance to buy.
The Guardian reported that Somerfield is confused that it has not had a direct approach from Sainsbury whose chief executive Sir Peter Davis is angry that Somerfield named Sainsbury as part of the bid by the John Lovering and Bob Mackenzie consortium.
Sainsbury is blocked for six months from making an approach to Somerfield, unless a new bidder comes forward.
Meanwhile, Sainsbury has applied for OFT clearance for the purchase of 171 stores, which would strengthen its position when the ban expires of if a new bid is made, the paper said.