Liverpool have granted Rhian Brewster permission to discuss terms with Sheffield United, with the Blades reported to have made a £17 million bid for the striker.
There is under a week until the deadline for the summer transfer window between top-flight clubs, ensuring the coming days are crucial as Brewster resolves his future.
Initially, the 20-year-old was expected to either stay at Liverpool or head out on loan, which could have opened up the prospect for another spell in the Championship, for which an extended deadline of October 16 would have been useful.
But now, particularly following the signing of Diogo Jota, Brewster is set for a permanent exit, albeit with the Reds demanding a buy-back clause in any deal with the likes of Sheffield United, Crystal Palace and Brighton.
United appear the most likely destination for the former Chelsea youngster, and the Mail report that Chris Wilder’s side are open to including the clause in their package.
It is claimed that the Blades have bid £17 million for Brewster, but while Liverpool value him at over £20 million including various add-ons, they have allowed the striker to open talks over a contract with the Premier League side.
This indicates that an exit is near, with one of the clubs likely to relent and either increase their offer or drop their price tag ahead of the deadline on October 5.
Brewster could still end up elsewhere, of course, but Palace chairman Steve Parish was forced to deny claims from Sky Sports that they had offered a deal worth £25 million last week and Wilder has been the most vocal in his hopes to sign the youngster.
Bramall Lane seems the best move for the player, too, with there an opening in Wilder’s squad up front, underlined by the fact the Blades are yet to score in three league games this season so far.
While he would likely be required to fight for his place initially, realistically as potentially United’s record signing—their current biggest outlay was for Sander Berge (£22m)—he should arrive as a first-choice starter.
A buy-back clause would provide security for Liverpool, in the event Brewster realises his potential in Sheffield and they wish to facilitate his return to Anfield for a relatively low fee, as there is no denying he is one of the most exciting young players in England.
It would, in a way, represent a long-term, high-value loan, though similar clauses for the likes of Jordon Ibe, Brad Smith and Sergi Canos in recent years suggest this is no guarantee of a return in the future.