Stoke midfielder Wilson Palacios is considering a move to Real Betis this month after emerging as one of the main transfer targets for new manager Juan Carlos Garrido.
Stoke are thought to be ready to allow the Honduras international to leave for a nominal fee and may even sanction a loan for the remainder of the season with a view to a permanent summer move.
That would mean a major loss on a player who cost six million pounds when he arrived from Tottenham Hotspur in 2011.
Palacios, signed by Tony Pulis, was given a fresh chance by his replacement Mark Hughes but failed to make a significant impact, starting only three Premier League games this season.
Hughes is looking to bring in a striker during the January window, and Stoke would like to balance the squad by allowing fringe players such as Palacios to move on.
Negotiations with Spanish club Betis, who are fighting to avoid relegation from La Liga, are believed to be set to begin in the next few days -- but Hughes said he did not believe their representatives had yet been in touch, saying: "There's been no contact as far as I'm aware."
Palacios, 29, is a regular starter for Honduras, and sources close to the player have indicated that he would be open to a move to Spain, with first-team football helping his preparations for the summer's World Cup.