Sky Sports understands that Leyton Orient have rejected an offer from Barnsley for their club captain Stephen Dawson.
The 26-year-old will be out of contract in the summer and he is yet to pen an extension.
Orient's failure to tie their influential midfielder down on fresh terms has sparked speculation that he could soon be on his way out of the club.
Numerous sides have been linked with an approach for the Irishman, but Barnsley are the first to make a move.
The Tykes believe Dawson is capable of making the step up into the Championship from League One and are keen to add him to their ranks for the second half of the season.
They have, however, seen their efforts to bring the former Mansfield and Bury man on board come to nothing.
It remains to be seen whether Keith Hill will return with an improved offer, but Orient have made it clear that they are reluctant to discuss a deal while there is still a chance of Dawson committing to an extended stay at Brisbane Road.