Reported Liverpool target Adam Johnson could be on his way out of Manchester City next month.
According to the Daily Mail, Sunderland are attempting to sign the 23-year-old 'on loan' for the remainder of the season, as well tabling a bid to sign Nedum Onuoha on a permanent basis.
However, should Johnson become available, Liverpool are thought to be in the running for the England winger who has grown increasingly frustrated at his lack of regular football under Roberto Mancini.
Last month the former Middlesbrough star - who signed for City for around £11 million in January - let his frustration get the better of him, admitting he may have to leave Eastlands in order to fulfil his ambitions.
Johnson told the Telegraph: "Every footballer has to think about it when the time comes. It is still early but I definitely would consider [leaving]."
These comments placed Liverpool - and others - on red alert and offers for the highly-rated attacker are now expected in January.
Johnson would certainly provide Liverpool with the added potency they so crave after Roy Hodgson admitted to the over reliance on the goalscoring prowess of Anfield stars Fernando Torres and Steven Gerrard.
The Liverpool boss is understood to have identified his attacking ranks as the most in need of reinforcement in the New Year and - along with a bid for Johnson - has been linked with moves for Aston Villa ace Ashley Young and Spurs flop David Bentley.
Hodgson is expected to be backed in the transfer market by new Liverpool owners NESV with upwards of £20 million in his pursuit of fresh blood come January 1.
Along with Liverpool director of football strategy, Damien Comolli, the Reds manager has been keeping tabs on a number of attack-minded players with a view to bringing them to Anfield next month.