Linfield have turned up the heat with an increased bid to lure Ballymena United midfielder David Cushley.
The Blues have already had a £10,000 bid rejected for the talented 23-year-old, who has one year remaining on his contract at the Showgrounds.
United boss Glenn Ferguson, who has added Nathan Hanley, Willie Faulkner and Mark Magennis to his squad over the summer, insists he is determined to hold on to the Belfast man.
Cushley played part of the goalkeeper Dwayne Nelson’s testimonial match on Tuesday night when the Sky Blues rolled out the welcome to a Rangers XI, managed by Ibrox idol Ian Durrant.
But Linfield will up the ante with a £15,000 raid for the United hitman.
Taking into account Cushley - winner of last season’s Northern Ireland Football Writers’ Association goal of the season award - could sign a pre-contract with the Blues in January, the increased offer, which is understood to be the Blues’ final offer, may just be enough to lure the former Distillery man to Windsor Park before the start of the campaign.