Leeds United are attempting to secure Cameron Stewart by signing him on emergency loan with Football League rules preventing the winger from making a permanent transfer to Elland Road.
Leeds intend to hand Stewart a 93-day deal after appearances for Hull and Charlton this season ruled out the possibility of the 22-year-old accepting an immediate, full-time contract.
But United are likely to reach an agreement which guarantees Stewart a permanent move when his deal at Hull expires in the summer.
Stewart looks set to join Leeds from City in the next 48 hours, giving United manager Brian McDermott his first signing of the January transfer window and a new player ahead of Saturday’s derby at Sheffield Wednesday.
But Football League regulations allowing players to feature for a maximum of two English clubs in one season will delay Leeds’ plan to tie Stewart to a long-term deal.
Stewart played once for Hull in a League Cup tie against Leyton Orient in August and featured 18 times for Charlton during his recent spell on loan at The Valley.
Charlton signed the former Manchester United trainee on a standard half-season loan, taking his quota of clubs for the term to two.
Emergency loans in the Football League do not count towards that quota, however, meaning Leeds are free to recruit him this month for 93 days.
His arrival would set McDermott’s plans for recruitment in motion, tying down a key target, and United are hinting strongly at the possibility of another arrival from a Premier League side before their trip to Hillsborough this weekend.
Stewart’s loan at Charlton ended with a New Year’s Day outing at Ipswich Town and the London club have offered him the chance to return to The Valley, backed by funds provided by new owner Roland Duchatelet.
One other Championship team have also shown an interest in Stewart but he looks increasingly likely to accept a switch to Leeds with a view to joining the club long-term at the end of the campaign.
His contract with Hull runs out in June and Stewart will be available on a free transfer during the close season unless City attempt to tie him to a new deal.