Manchester United are reportedly considering a £16million bid for Newcastle midfielder Cheick Tiote.
The Ivory Coast international, who was linked with a move to Chelsea last summer, has been on United's radar throughout the year as a result of some impressive performances for the Magpies.
In recent weeks it has been thought that United were the more likely of the two clubs to launch a bid for the tough tackler when the transfer window reopens, and according to Caughtoffside.com, Red Devils boss Sir Alex Ferguson is ready to make his move in January.
Newcastle boss Alan Pardew last week warned clubs that the player who cost just £3.5m would only be sold if somebody was prepared to break the bank.
Pardew has not ruled out a move in January, but insisted: "It is going to cost a hell of a lot of money, a hell of a lot of money because we’re in that position now.
"I think any of our players that get linked to other clubs, those clubs are going to need to know they’ll need to pay a shed load of money to get anyone out of this football club."
He added: "I don’t envisage anyone going out in this window.
"But if a club, one of the top clubs, comes in and wants to pay way, way over the odds we’ll have to look at it."