English version

wild goose chase

From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishwild goose chaseˌwild ˈgoose ˌchase noun [countable]  LOOK FORa situation where you are looking for something that does not exist or that you are very unlikely to find, so that you waste a lot of time It looks like they’ve sent us on a wild goose chase.
Examples from the Corpus
wild goose chaseI thought, Don't know about a wild goose chase, this is a lame duck chase.Each shopping trip is a wild goose chase.Instead of that, he had become involved in what was most likely a wild goose chase.Looking around the room, Harry wondered if Potts had deliberately sent him on a wild goose chase.They deliberately sent me on a wild goose chase.On that occasion their predicament had been spotted and a boat had been sent out from Sharpness on a wild goose chase.The photographs might represent a wild goose chase after the random neuroses of an insecure young woman.Save yourself a wild goose chase round the shops.
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