Leicester City have seen an improved £4.5m bid for Marseille utility man Bouna Sarr rejected by his club, according to reports in France.
RMC Sport has claimed that the Foxes had returned with a second bid for the Ligue 1 club's player with the hope that their improved offer will help to sway Marseille into letting him leave.
Marseille had rejected Leicester's initial £2.5m bid as they look to keep hold of a key asset, and Les Olympiens have chosen to do likewise with the Premier League club's latest attempt to prise the Guinea international away.
Sarr has impressed for Marseille all season long, and manager Rudi Garcia is believed to have told his staff and superiors that they must do everything they can to retain his services.
With two bids now rejected, the ball is firmly back in Leicester's court to see if they wish to chance their hand by upping their offer again or deciding to turn their attentions to other January transfer targets.
Foxes boss Claude Puel is a known admirer of Sarr's and wanted the midfielder-cum-defender to strengthen his first-team squad at the King Power stadium this month.
Leicester have offered Marseille €5m for Bouna Sarr (RMC). OM surely can't accept a deal so low for such a versatile and capable player? #LCFC— Robin Bairner (@RBairner) January 18, 2018
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It is unclear if the Frenchman will ask Leicester's Thai owners to increase their bid to lure Marseille into selling Sarr, and it could well be that it takes the 25-year-old to ask to leave before Leicester can make any in-roads with this particular transfer.
Sarr moved to Marseille from FC Metz for £2m in July 2015 and has made 84 appearances in all competitions for the Stade Velodrome-based team.
Of those appearances, 20 have come this term after Sarr made the right-back berth his own under Garcia and he has featured in both France's top flight and the Europa League this term.
Leicester have concerns over the right full-back position in their team with current first-choice option Danny Simpson injured, while Sarr's versatility could also provide another wing option if the club reluctantly decide to sell star man Riyad Mahrez this month.