Real Betis are to rival Saint-Etienne in a bid to sign Aston Villa midfielder Jordan Veretout on a permanent basis, say reports.
The two registered an interested in the former French Under 21 player last summer with the Ligue 1 side eventually concluding a season-long loan deal.
However, L’Equipe now report Saint-Etienne boss Oscar Garcia has tried to convince the 24-year-old to join the club permanently next season.
Los Verdiblancos have other ideas, according to Estadio Deportivo, and are still keen on a move for the Villa player despite the exit of sporting director Miguel Torrecilla – who had instigated a move – to Sporting Gijon.
Veretout joined the Birmingham-based club from Nantes in 2015 but after the club’s relegation he joined Saint-Etienne last season on loan, making 35 Ligue 1 showings.
Betis are hopeful of strengthening their ranks after the departures of 13 players this summer - including star midfielder Dani Ceballos - with six signings coming into the club.