Kurt Zouma is believed to be considering a move to Anzhi Makhachkala in the summer, despite his agent previously claiming that he liked the idea of a move to Liverpool.
The defender was reportedly a target for Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers as he looks to improve the backline after Jamie Carragher's retirement. A consistent centre-back for St Etienne, Zouma has shown he has the potential to step up to a bigger club, and has made his intentions to move this summer clear.
Agent David Vanditelli claimed two weeks ago that Zouma would listen if Liverpool wanted to discuss a possible deal, telling Eurosport France: "Playing in the Europa League is a prospect that pleases him. But Liverpool and other clubs are very interesting.
"He could leave to sit on the bench, but it is better to be on the bench of a big club like Liverpool, with all due respect to Saint Etienne."
But now, L'Equipe and Le10Sport are reporting that Anzhi have stolen the march on Liverpool, and have offered Zouma a deal too good to refuse as he toured the grounds in Russia and entered discussions with the club president.
The Russian big-spenders have made some big moves in recent transfer windows, and despite players having to fly to home games as it's too dangerous to live in the local town, they currently have the likes of Samuel Eto'o and Lassana Diarra on their books.
Liverpool, meanwhile, will be well aware of just how tough it will be to bring in reasonably priced replacements for Carragher, particularly when they can't offer any European football next season.
Rodgers has insisted he will only bring players to the club who have demonstrated a winning mentality, and his movements in the January window showed that he can make clever signings despite having a very disappointing first summer in charge.
Raul Albiol has also been identified as a potential replacement for Carragher, and the Reds may need to look away from Zouma if they hope to bring in more than one defensive target this summer, with Anzhi reportedly offering €10 million for his signature.