CELTIC manager Neil Lennon hopes to swap one South Korean for another as he revamps his squad for a tilt at qualifying for the Champions League.
The Parkhead club have targeted winger Kim Bo-Kyung, currently playing for Cerzeo Ozaka in Japan. And the money to bring the 22-year-old to the SPL champions could come from Liverpool, who are reported to be ready to offer £7million for Ki Sung-Yueng.
Lennon has admitted he will need to sell to finance his spending plans in this window.
He has already comitted £5m to securing Fraser Foster on a permanent deal, when the £2m paid to Newcastle and the player's personal terms over the period of the four-year contract are tallied up.
A central defender – Frenchman Michael Ciani is still on the radar – and a striker with aerial power remain top of Lennon's priorities. But Rosenborg midfielder Markus Henriksen is also a player Lenny has revealed he admires.
If Ki can be sold for more than the £6m Russian club Rubin Kazan have already offered and had rejected, the way would be open for Lennon to make his moves.
Brendan Rodgers is trying to put his mark on the Liverpool squad he inherited from Kenny Dalglish this summer, and Ki is believed to be one of the men he reckons could enhance his side.
Ki has been a long-time admirer of Anfield captain Steven Gerrard, and the chance to link up with him would be a huge attraction.
But QPR and Borussia Dortmund are also tracking the midfielder, who has stated a preference to move to Spain.
Deportivo La Coruna could give the 23-year-old that opportunity, if they firm up their interest.
But, Celtic will hope that a vibrant bidding war ensues for the man who has insisted he wants to finish representing South Korea in the upcoming Olympics before he decides where he goes next.
That could still be QPR, whose chairman, Tony Fernandes, has already recruited Ki's countryman, Ji-sung Park from Manchester United.
Ferandes said: "Ki is a very good player and we are very aware of him. He's a player we will be watching and also monitoring closely."
Likewise, Celtic are hot on the trail on Bo-Kyung, though Lennon – who has denied he is chasing Nottingham Forest striker Dexter Blackstock – is coy when discussing the South Korean.
After last night's opening game of their four-match tour of Germany and Holland, which saw the Hoops hold Bundesliga side Augsburg to a goalless draw, the manager said of the man who is also on the radar of Cardiff: "There will be a lot of players we'll be linked with.
"I don't know him personally but I've seen him play. He's a creative type player, but there's nothing more in it right now. I don't know if there is any mileage in it.
"We have narrowed it down to a few positions, and the boys back home are working away on it."
Bo-Kyung is convinced Celtic are indeed interested in signing him and said: "I want to play in the UK or Germany, and I could develop as a player at Celtic."