American football team L A Galaxy could be in the process of recruiting Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard as a replacement for David Beckham.
It would need a considerable offer to prize Lampard, 33, from Stamford Bridge, especially since his sparkling form has silenced doubts over his future under new manager Andre Villas-Boas.
But Galaxy need to find someone close to Beckham's profile if speculation about him leaving the Home Depot Center after next Sunday's sell-out MLS Cup final against Dynamo Houston turns out to be well founded.
Beckham is undecided about whether to stay with Galaxy or take up one of the options available to him in England and Italy, while the offer to join Paris Saint-Germain, backed by Qatar's billions and led by director of football Leonardo, his former colleague at AC Milan, is proving difficult to resist.
He intends to explore every avenue before making his choice.
In spite of the popular belief that Beckham, 36, was committing professional suicide by quitting Real Madrid for the then little-known American club, his five years at Galaxy have been a success, for him personally and professionally, and especially for the club, whom he has put on the world football map.
Such has been his impact in Los Angeles that they would move heaven and earth to persuade him to sign another deal.
The Daily Mail quoted MLS commissioner Don Garber, as saying: ''David has delivered for us on all aspects of our expectations, both on and off the field. David had a terrific year this year. It would be hard to argue he wasn't one of the most important players on our fields," he added.
"Off the field, he continues to be an important part of what drives some of the popularity of our league, both here and around the world. He remains a very popular guy. His presence on the sports pages but also on the "people pages" continues to grow here in America, and we benefit from that. MLS wouldn't be what it is today if David didn't come to play in Major League Soccer. All of us appreciate everything that he has done," Garber added.