By Wayne Veysey | Chief Correspondent
Gus Poyet is close to being appointed the new manager of Reading, Goal.com understands.
The 45-year-old has been given permission by Brighton to hold formal talks with the Premier League club.
Goal.com has learned that Reading are prepared to make Poyet a lucrative offer that considerably exceeds his Brighton terms to entice him to the Madejski Stadium.
The Uruguayan is believed to be keen to swap the challenge of a Championship promotion push for leading Reading's against-the-odds survival bid.
Poyet could be confirmed as the new Reading manager within days should negotiations proceed smoothly.
The Berkshire club, who fired Brian McDermott on Monday, March 11, are desperate to avoid an immediate return to the Championship.
Russian owner Anton Zingarevich is well aware that top-flight status will be worth at least £20 million more per club next season as a result of the mammoth new broadcasting deal, with the distribution to the bottom club in the league rising from £42.5m to £61.9m.
Reading lie in 19th position in the Premier League but Poyet is ready to take on the uphill task of closing the seven-point gap on 17th-placed Aston Villa.
He is expected to leave Brighton even though they are well placed to land one of the four Championship play-offs spots. The East Sussex-based club are seventh in the league and level on points with sixth-placed Leicester, who have won just one game in their last nine.
Zingarevich will have to pay a compensation package to Brighton to lure Poyet, who has three years remaining on his contract, to the Madejski Stadium.
The former Chelsea midfielder took over at Brighton in November 2009 and led them to the League One title in the following season. He had previously had spells as assistant manager at Tottenham, Leeds United and Swindon.