Liverpool are pushing to sign Schalke defender Ozan Kabak, but face a race against time to get the deal over the line before the transfer window closes.
The Reds have sparked into life in the transfer window and are looking to conclude deals for two centre-backs. Preston's Ben Davies is expected to be one, while Marseille's Duje Caleta-Car was identified as an option late on Sunday.
However, talks with the French side quickly hit an impasse, with Mohamed Bouhafsi revealing that a deal was now off the table, and sources have confirmed to 90min that negotiations are now underway over a loan deal for Kabak.
As noted by The Athletic, talks have hit an advanced stage over a loan with an obligation to buy. Schalke value Kabak at close to £25m and would demand a loan fee of around £2m to agree to the deal.
Schalke are yet to accept the proposal as they want to make sure they have signed a replacement before allowing their star to leave. Arsenal's Shkodran Mustafi is the man they want, but any deal must be finalised before the Bundesliga transfer window closes at 17:00 (GMT).
Arsenal are open to offloading Mustafi, but with Schalke struggling financially, a deal is far from straightforward.
Kabak has been one of the shining lights in what has been an otherwise disappointing season for Schalke. They currently sit bottom of the Bundesliga table, having picked up just eight points from 19 games, but their young defender has definitely stood out.
He was expected to be one of Liverpool's targets at the end of the season, but with Jurgen Klopp's injury crisis showing no sign of easing up, the Reds have been forced into action earlier than expected.
Fabinho and Joel Matip have both battled injuries recently, while the returns of both Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez are still far down the line, forcing Klopp to play midfielder Jordan Henderson alongside Nat Phillips in Sunday's 3-1 win over West Ham.