Hull City manager Nigel Pearson is hoping to agree a deal to bring Liverpool defender Daniel Ayala back to the KC Stadium on a permanent basis.
Ayala spent three months on loan with the Tigers last season, and scored once in 12 appearances before undertaking a loan spell at Championship rivals Derby County.
He is wanted back at Hull, but a deal appears unlikely to be reached before the Tigers open the new season at home to Blackpool on Friday night.
The two clubs have yet to settle on a fee and Pearson is waiting to discover if a deal can be agreed to sign Ayala.
"I never rule anything in or out but I would say it's unlikely," Pearson told the Hull Daily Mail regarding the prospects of Ayala facing Blackpool.
"Ayala is a target and we've put a bid in. The clubs are in discussion and we'll see where it takes us.
"As always the criteria of how you add to your squad is governed by finances but we'll always try and bring in the best players that are available to us."
Reports have suggested Hull are prepared to offer £500,000 plus further payments in the future, while Liverpool are holding out for double that amount.