Brazilian journalist Marcelo Bechler has claimed that Barcelona will present a formal offer for Liverpool midfielder Philippe Coutinho on New Year's Day and hope for the matter to be resolved one way or the other within three days.
Bechler, who was a leading source on the Neymar transfer saga during the summer, stated via Twitter that Liverpool's owners will have only a day or two to come up with a response.
After that, 'everything should be closed' by the third day.
Amanhã se abre o mercado e chegará uma proposta oficial do Barcelona ao Liverpool. Donos norte-americanos deverão responder ainda dia 1 ou 2. Dia 3 tudo deverá ser fechado. Para saída ou não. Isso é o que eles projetam e esperam.— Marcelo Bechler (@marcelobechler) December 31, 2017
It is not made clear how much Barça have/will allegedly bid, but it is likely to be a vast figure given that offers of up to €150m were said to have been rejected by Liverpool in August.
Coutinho submitted a transfer request at the time and a vocal Catalan press have maintained ever since that he has an understanding with the Reds that he would be allowed to leave come January.
A premature statement about Barcelona shirts bearing Coutinho's name on Nike's official website over the weekend was purported to have confirmed a 'done deal'.
The accidental leak read: "Philippe Coutinho is ready to light up Camp Nou. Get your 2017/18 FC Barcelona kit with the Magician's name on it. Act fast - free personalisation only available until 6 January."
Assuming that Bechler's information is correct and the Nike 'leak' holds substance, it looks as though Coutinho, who has captained Liverpool in recent weeks, could well be wearing Barça colours before the end of the month.
The only downside for the Catalan giants is that the Brazilian would not eligible to play Champions League football again this season after already representing Liverpool in the competition.