Stoke City are edging ever closer to landing Mark Hughes' successor as the club are entrenched in advance negotiations with former Watford manager Quique Sanchez Flores.
Flores, however, must first hold discussions over the terms of his exit at current club Espanyol which is likely to result in Eddie Niedzwiecki - the Potters' first-team coach - acting as the caretaker boss for the club's trip to Manchester United on Monday.
According to the Daily Mail, Stoke's vice-chairman John Coates and the chief executive Tony Scholes flew to Barcelona on Wednesday, which has resulted in offering Flores a five-year deal which they hope to officially get over the line this weekend.
The report claims the 52-year-old would prefer to watch from the stands at Old Trafford on Monday night as to not disrupt Stoke's preparations so close to the game.
Pretty jealous of Stoke if they manage to appoint Quique Sanchez Flores. Thought he did a good job at Watford— Ashley Burtoft (@AshBurty) January 12, 2018
With the Potters languishing in 18th position after winning just five league games this season, the club are said to see Flores as the man who could steer the team out of the relegation zone and ensure Premier League safety.
Despite taking Watford to 13th place in the table and to an FA Cup semi-final in 2016 Flores was ultimately sacked at the end of the season, but his invaluable experience in England's top flight is likely to prove decisive in Stoke's future.
Mark Hughes was sacked last week following Stoke's disappointing 2-1 FA Cup defeat to League two side Coventry, which took the Potters' record to six losses in their last eight games across all competitions.
His expected replacement, Flores - formally manager of Atletico Madrid - guided Espanyol to an eighth place finish in La Liga last season and now they sit in 14th position after 18 games.