Palmeiras defender Yerry Mina wants to move to Barcelona during the ongoing January transfer window, the Brazilian club's sporting director Alexandre Mattos has confirmed.

The Colombian centre-back has been linked with a transfer to the Catalan giants since the summer and was expected to move at the end of the current campaign, with the two clubs already having an agreement in place.

Barcelona, however, are keen to move the deal forward and bring the defender to Camp Nou in January owing to Javier Mascherano's decision to leave the club after falling out of favour this season. He is expected to join Chinese Super League club Hebei Fortune before the end of the current transfer window.

The La Liga leaders are keen to bring in a replacement and have identified Mina to fill the void left by the Barcelona veteran. The Catalan club are willing to up their offer, which was initially agreed at €9m (£7.9m), in order to expedite the deal this month.

Recent reports suggested that the defender has already agreed personal terms with Barcelona, and once the deal is ratified by both clubs, he will put pen-to-paper on a five-year deal worth €18.5m (£16.4m, $22.3m).

However, the Palmeiras sporting director has revealed that Barcelona are yet to match their valuation and has made it clear that unless their demands are met, Mina will remain a Palmeiras player.

"I spoke with Mina, who says he has big dreams and that now is the time to leave," Mattos said, as quoted by

"Now that we know his desire, it's time to reach an agreement with Barcelona," he explained. "If they come to us with the figure we have asked for, Mina will go. If not, he'll stay at Palmeiras."

Barcelona have their hands full in terms of negotiating January transfers, with a move for Philippe Coutinho also on the horizon. The La Liga side are said to be in the final phase of negotiations to bring the Liverpool midfielder to the Camp Nou after finally agreeing to meet the Premier League club's demands.

Philippe Coutinho
Philippe Coutinho is closing in on a move to Barcelona Getty