NEWCASTLE United face competition for Lille’s Mathieu Debuchy – from Real Madrid.
Reports in France suggest Bernabeu boss Jose Mourinho is ready to pay almost £8m to sign the right-back.
Mourinho is said to be unhappy at the form of former Liverpool full-back Alvaro Arbeloa, and keen to sign Debuchy to challenge him for a place in his side.
Magpies boss Alan Pardew had a £5m bid for the 27-year-old – who is injured, and will not feature for Lille in their Champions League play-off against FC Copenhagen tonight – rejected earlier this summer.
Newcastle were considering improving their offer before Friday night’s transfer deadline.
However, should Real formally bid for Debuchy, the Tynesiders’ pursuit of the player, a close friend of Yohan Cabaye, will be all but over, despite the player’s keeness to switch to Newcastle.
The news on Debuchy comes after the agent of another Newcastle target – Twente’s Douglas – suggested the centre-half was to stay in Holland for another season.
Douglas had been expected to leave the club this summer, with Newcastle rivalling Fulham for his signature.
However, his representative, Rodrigo da Silveira, has seemingly ruled out a move to the Premier League after months of speculation surrounding his future, though his public stance could yet be brinkmanship.
“We are not in London, and won’t go to London,” he told Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf.
“We are with Douglas in Enschede, and are not negotiating with Fulham.
“On Thursday Douglas will play against Bursaspor (in the Europa League). Douglas is very happy at Twente and wanted to remain there this season.”
Douglas – who was born in Brazil – this month secured Dutch citizenship after five years residency in the country.
H Arsenal could sell England winger Theo Walcott this week, having failed to reach an agreement over a contract extension, though talks are ongoing. The 23-year-old has been offered an improved five-year deal worth £75,000 a week.
The Gunners, meanwhile, have sold midfielder Henri Lansbury to Nottingham Forest for around £1m.
H Tottenham have been given permission to speak to Fulham star Moussa Dembele after the two clubs agreed a fee for the 25-year-old Belgium utility man.
H Southampton have signed Zambian striker Emmanuel Mayuka, 21, from Swiss club Young Boys for an undisclosed fee on a five-year deal.
H MK Dons have signed free agent former Ipswich midfielder Jimmy Bullard on a short-term contract until December 31.