Stoke are said to be keeping tabs on Hoffenheim defender Ermin Bicakcic ahead of a potential summer swoop.
Bicakcic played in 18 of 34 league games as Hoffenheim just managed to avoid relegation from the German Bundesliga, while he has rejected the offer of a new contract to stay beyond summer 2017.
As a result Hoffenheim are keen to offload Bicakcic this summer to avoid losing him on a Bosman free transfer which looks set to spark a transfer scramble.
Potters boss Mark Hughes has options in central defence, but he has been robbed of key players through injury this season, in particular skipper Ryan Shawcross, who has been dogged by back trouble.
Hughes is said to be keen on the highly-rated 26-year-old Bosnia international central defender, but could face competition from West Bromwich Albion for his services.
However, Bicakcic is an international team-mate of former Potters goalkeeper Asmir Begovic, which could put the Britannia Stadium outfit in the driving seat.