Marseille coach Elie Baup has said he hopes to add more attacking players to his squad following the arrival of Dimitri Payet from Lille.
Lille attacking midfielder Florian Thauvin, 20, and his Rennes counterpart Romain Alessandrini, 24, are Baup’s main targets.
Thauvin spent last season on loan at Bastia and is in action at the under-20 World Cup in Turkey, where he scored in France’s quarter-final win over Uzbekistan.
While Baup has been able to keep an eye on Thauvin’s form, he is still awaiting news on Alessandrini – but has said he will not wait until the close of the transfer window, on September 2, in order to sign him.
“We spoke about game intelligence and I watched Thauvin again with the national team,” he told L’Equipe. “He has a capacity to adapt, too.
“For Alessandrini, we’ll have to wait. I haven’t discussed the case with the president. He knows the real development of the situation.”
Baup was also guarded when discussing the potential return of Queens Park Rangers midfielder Joey Barton, who played for the club on loan last season.
Turkish side Besiktas have also been linked with a move for Barton, and Baup said: “I don’t know how that’s going to evolve. He and the club reached an agreement on the challenge to come, but he belongs to QPR.”
Ghanaian midfielder Andre Ayew, striker André-Pierre Gignac – last season’s top scorer with 13 league goals - and defender Nicolas Nkoulou have two years left on their contracts at Marseille.
The club could be tempted to cash in on them, but Baup said no bids had yet been received.