Queens Park Rangers have rejected a £12million bid from Leicester City for Charlie Austin.
The striker is one of Newcastle United main summer targets, but the club is yet to table an offer for the 25-year-old.
Managerless Leicester, however, have made the first move.
According to Sky Sports, QPR – who rate Austin in the £15million-bracket – have turned down their bid.
And the onus now is on Newcastle to firm up their interest and better the offer from Leicester, who sacked manager Nigel Pearson this week.
Austin – who got married last month – has been working on his fitness while on his honeymoon.
He posted a photograph on Twitter of himself working alone in a gym.
Austin tweeted: “That time again #notlong #9.”
United are ready to tempt Austin with the club’s famous No 9 jersey, which is currently worn by Papiss Demba Cisse.
Cisse is expected to leave St James’s Park this summer.
West Ham United, Southampton and Crystal Palace are also interested in Austin.