Middlesbrough have had a bid for Ben Watson rejected by Crystal Palace, skysports.com understands.
Watson's future at Palace has been the subject of intense speculation in recent months with the player's current contract expiring in the summer.
The 23-year-old has rejected the club's offer of a new deal and a number of sides are believed to be keen on signing him.
Middlesbrough are thought to be leading the chase for Watson, with Boro boss Gareth Southgate keen to bolster his midfield options.
So far Boro have seen their overtures rebuffed by Palace who are keen to keep hold of the talented midfielder.
Middlesbrough are believed to be ready to step up their efforts to sign Watson and steal a march on their rivals who are also chasing the player.
Championship promotion hopefuls Wolves and Queens Park Rangers are both thought to be tracking Watson's situation and they could move for the midfielder in this month's transfer window.