Tottenham have reportedly made an approach for Barcelona defender Marc Bartra.
The 22-year-old has struggled for game time at the Camp Nou, despite breaking into the Catalans' first team a couple of years ago. Goal.com believes Spurs are planning to take advantage of the situation and lure the youngster to north London with the promise of regular game time.
However, any move for Batra will rest on the Spanish champions' ability to sign a new centre-back. Manager Gerardo Martino is short on numbers at the back and is in the market for an experienced defender, particularly since club captain Carlos Puyol is struggling with injuries and is now 35 years old.
Barcelona have already made offers for Chelsea's David Luiz and Liverpool's Daniel Agger but initial bids of £34.5m and £14.6m were rejected. The Goal.com report also claims the Spaniards made enquiries about Tottenham defender Jan Vertonghen, only to be informed the Belgium international was not for sale.
If they do succeed in hiring a new centre-back, the Catalans will likely permit Batra to leave; if not on a permanent deal then at least a season-long loan, to get game time and continue developing.
Loan moves have already been made for the player, with Barcelona's domestic rivals Valencia and Villarreal approaching Nou Camp chiefs.
Spurs are understood to want an outright transfer though. William Gallas' exit and Steven Caulker's sale, combined with Vertonghen's injury and Younes Kaboul's fitness problems, have left Andre Villas-Boas with only Michael Dawson as a fit senior player in that position.
Meanwhile, Bartra is unhappy with limited first team appearances, a fact that is puzzling because Barcelona suffered a crisis in central defence last season but yet chose to play Argentine international Javier Mascherano or Cameroonian Alex Song (defensive midfielders) rather than the La Masia product.
Bartra's agent expressed his client's disappointment, stating: "Bartra is 25,000 times better than Song as a central defender."
The former Spain U21 International started only three La Liga games and four Champions League games last season and made only 16 appearances overall.