Manchester City are hopeful of making Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang their second major signing of the summer and are in "advanced talks" with Borussia Dortmund over buying the forward, according to reports.
The Times says City have emerged as the favourite to land the Gabon striker, even though the player is understood to prefer a move to Barcelona or Real Madrid.
But the Spanish giants are considered unlikely to make a move for the Bundesliga player of the year this summer, as their squads are already well-stocked with world class strikers.
City are reportedly ready to spend a club-record £58m ($84m) to sign Aubameyang, who scored 25 goals in 31 league appearances for Dortmund last season and is contracted to the German club until 2020.
Fellow Premier League clubs Arsenal and Manchester United have also been linked with the forward.
New City boss Pep Guardiola has reportedly been handed a sizeable transfer war chest to transform the club into regular contenders for the league and the Champions League.
He has already signed midfielder Ilkay Gundogan from Dortmund for a fee of around £20m ($29m).
Speculation that Aubameyang, 26, would leave Dortmund arose last week after journalist Francois David tweeted that Gabon coach Jorge Costa had been asked not to select him for the friendly match against Mauritania "because he is about to change clubs".
But the Bundesliga club rubbished that report, with chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke telling Sport Bild that it was "all nonsense".
Aubameyang said in February that it was his "childhood dream" to play for Real Madrid.
"I promised my grandfather, who was from Avila some 110km away from Madrid, that I would play there," he was quoted as saying by ESPN.
"I realise that it will not be easy, but is always in the back of my mind. Playing for Real Madrid, or even another big Spanish club, would also be a great gift for my mother."