Roma are dangerously close to walking away from a deal to lure Riyad Mahrez to Italy after the club confirmed it had made their "final" offer for the wantaway Leicester star.
I Giallorossi have seen two bids knocked back by the Foxes for their prized asset, and are now at the "make or break" stage of negotiations over Mahrez's signature.
Football Italia carried quotes from Roma's sporting director Monchi, who confirmed that one last bid had been made - believed to be around €40m - and that the Serie A heavyweights had begun looking at other targets in case Leicester decided to reject that offer too.
He claimed: “We’re not just working on one name. It’s logical, we have different options. In the case of Mahrez it’s become public knowledge, with others it hasn’t.
“We’ve made two offers, the second is fair and then we stopped. There are no percentages, the deal will get over the line or it won’t.
“Mahrez is one of the options, not the only one. It’s true that this could be the last offer, we’re evaluating other options.”
Roma say they're now also looking at other targets after Leicester reject second bid (£27m) for Riyad Mahrez. Right price according to Roma— Kaveh Solhekol (@SkyKaveh) July 28, 2017
If Roma do opt to walk away from bringing Mahrez to the Stadio Olimpico, it could pave the way for Arsenal to swoop for the Algeria international instead - although Mahrez is not thought to be a top target for the FA Cup winners.
The Gunners were believed to be the front runners in any deal to end Mahrez's four-year career at the King Power Stadium before Roma's intervention, and Arsene Wenger's men would be installed as favourites again if Roma moved on to other possible new recruits.
Mahrez handed in a transfer request at the end of last season after he grew frustrated at Leicester's inability to successfully try and defend their seemingly impossible 2015/16 Premier League crown.
The Foxes became embroiled in a relegation scrap for much of the campaign before new boss Craig Shakespeare led them to the relative safety of mid-table.
The Midlands club slapped a reported £50m price tag on Mahrez's head after he told them of his desire to leave, and they are refusing to budge on that valuation despite Roma's best attempts to persuade them to lower their asking price.