Central Coast Mariners have asked Football Federation Australia (FFA) to change the rules regarding visa players to allow them to sign a Czech Republic youth international on loan from Everton.
Mariners coach Tony Walmsley revealed after his team's 2-1 loss away to Melbourne Victory that Central Coast are set to announce the signing of a new defender later this week, while they are also interested in one of Everton's young goalkeepers.
The Mariners and Everton formed an official partnership in February but it has yet to see any players move from one club to the other.
It is understood the player in question is Jindrich Stanek, formerly of Sparta Prague, who signed with the Premier League club in January 2014 but has never played a senior game for Everton.
But FFA rules could prevent the Mariners from signing Stanek as they look to replace out-of-favour gloveman Liam Reddy.
"Yeah, we're working on the Everton link. There's a goalkeeper there available to us," Walmsley said.
"The problem is he doesn't meet FFA [regulations] from an age perspective, which we've asked them to revisit... so you know, we're talking about a 19-year-old 'keeper, a Czech international whose not age eligible to be a visa player. He needs to be 20.
"So we've asked if they could have a look at that. That would have meant we couldn't sign Wayne Rooney from Everton at 16, which would have been a bit of a shame."
With Reddy on the outer and Eddy Bosnar already having been released by the club this season, Walmsley admits he's "juggling a thin squad", which may be getting even thinner after the Victory clash.
Walmsley claimed Mitch Austin - who was substituted at half-time - may have a broken foot.
"I don't know whether it was [Daniel] Georgievski or [Leigh] Broxham, who caught him [Austin] quite early in the game and he played through it for a while but it got worse and worse and worse," the Mariners coach explained.
"His foot's twice its normal size, so he'll be going in for scans but he's not in the best shape at the moment.