Derby County manager Frank Lampard has confirmed that midfielder George Thorne is speaking to Luton about a possible loan move to Kenilworth Road.
The 25-year-old, who went to school in Bedford, is yet to play this season for the Rams, but has been a regular for the U23s in the Premier League Two Division One, playing 11 times, scoring twice, his last appearance in the 1-0 defeat at Everton on December 16
Speaking to the Derby Telegraph, Lampard said: "He's talking to Luton now, so it's one that may be happening, or not, but he's speaking to them.
"He's had his permission to speak to them.
"It will be great for George to go and play football. He needs to do that.
"He trained with us all pre-season, he's been playing 23s games. I watched him all pre-season and I've watched every 23s game that he plays.
"Now it's for him to go and play at a really competitive level, after some injury problems that I'm very aware of which he had here before.
"That will help him, personally."
Thorne, who started his career with West Bromwich Albion, where he made nine Premier League appearances, had spells with Portsmouth, Peterborough United and Watford, before heading to Derby on loan in January 2014.
The move was made permanent in July 2014, with the Rams agreeing a fee with West Brom of over £2.5m and Thorne signing a four year deal, only to suffer cruciate knee ligament injury during a friendly match against Zenit Saint Petersburg a few days later.
Thorne, who has played England U16s, U17s, U18s and U19s, made 36 appearances in the 2015-16 before suffering a double leg break in May 2016.
That ruled him out of the 2016-17 campaign, although he did recover to feature 22 times last term, as Luton chief Nathan Jones revealed yesterday he is the market for a midfielder during the transfer window, saying: "We want to bring in another midfield player and if that’s a defensive one, or if it’s one that’s versatile and can do a bit of both, then that’s what we’re looking at.
"We are looking to bring in a midfield player, what type depends on what deal we can get done.”