Molde boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has confirmed that Southampton are set to sign Vegard Forren, after the defender backed out of a trial at Liverpool.
Liverpool appeared to have put themselves in pole position to sign Forren, 24, who has attracted interest from a string of Premier League clubs, including Everton, Fulham and Sunderland.
But former United striker Solskjaer confirmed that Southampton were in advanced negotiations with Molde while the Reds were yet to table a bid, revealing that the transfer had been "more of less agreed".
As a result, Forren did not turn up for his scheduled trial at Liverpool's training ground on Tuesday - instead making the trip down to Southampton to continue discussions over the deal.
"There have been many inquiries from various English clubs, but Southampton submitted an offer, it was very interesting for us and Vegard," Solksjaer told local Norwegian newspaper Romsdals Budstikke. "We are more or less agreed with the club, but nothing is 100% confirmed. Molde is close to a deal, so we'll see if this is something that all the three parties will go on.”
He added: "We have had a good dialogue with Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers, who wanted to talk to Vegard and see him in training. We agreed that he could go there to train with the squad. But Liverpool have not made a bid."
Forren, who has five caps for Norway, was one of the best performers in the Norwegian league last season and helped Solskjaer's side win the Tippeligaen title.
Southampton boss Nigel Adkins has played down the advancement of his side's interest, insisting that he won't discuss the deal until it is complete.
"Like everything through the transfer window, there is always going to be speculation and people talking about different deals and I think it is prudent that, until someone signs a bit of paper, you don't announce it," Adkins said.
"Already in this transfer window in January there has been one or two cases where a player is meant to be at one club and then the next minute they have signed for another club. Speculation is there and obviously this is the latest one and when things happen, if they happen, our football club will announce it."
Meanwhile, former Saints defender Claus Lundekvam believes the centre-back could be just the signing Adkins' side need as they battle to move clear of the relegation zone.
"This is very, very exciting," Lundekvam said. "Southampton have been looking to bolster their central defence for a while and Vegard is a good option."