Rotherham United may have to move fast if they want to stay in the hunt for Kieffer Moore after a rival club raised the stakes in the battle for the League One hot-shot.
The Millers have tabled an undisclosed bid for the hitman who scored 13 goals in 24 loan appearances before being recalled by parent club Ipswich Town at the end of December.
But Peterborough United have now had an offer accepted and are looking to tie up a move for the 25-year-old striker by the weekend if possible.
It is believed they’re willing to pay £250,000 up front, with various add-ons taking the overall fee far in excess of that figure.
The deal is not yet done. Championship Ipswich have agreed the final figure but are negotiating with Posh over the payment structure.
Peterborough director of football Barry Fry said: “We believe Moore playing alongside Jack Marriott, with Marcus Maddison supplying the crosses, would be formidable in League One.
“Moore has done well for Rotherham this season and obviously they also want him, so we will have to wait and see.”
The Millers might have to consider digging deeper if they want to jump Posh in the queue.
Fry hinted that Peterborough owner Darragh MacAnthony has yet to approve the offer put to the Tractor Boys.
“We have had a bid accepted,” he said. “But there are a lot of add-ons attached which our chairman might not fancy.”
Only Marriott, with 17 goals, has outscored Moore in the third tier this season.
Moore was on target for Rotherham at the ABAX Stadium in August when Posh triumphed 2-1 thanks to a Marriott double.
Seventh-placed Rotherham have made contigency plans for this month’s transfer window in case they can’t bring back Moore to AESSEAL New York Stadium, but it would be a blow to lose him to a team just once place and one point behind them in the table.
Other clubs, including Brentford, Charlton Athletic and Wigan Athletic, have also been monitoring the 6ft 5in marksman.
Meanwhile, Oldham Athletic are keen to sign Millers old boy Ben Pringle who is out of favour at Preston North End.