Claudio Ranieri says he will not stand in Timothy Fosu-Mensah’s way if the defender wants to leave Fulham.
It comes after reports that Aston Villa could sign the on-loan Manchester United defender during this month’s transfer window.
Fosu-Mensah joined the Whites on a season-long loan in August but has struggled to hold down a first-team place, so the deal could be terminated.
It would free up space in Fulham boss Ranieri’s squad and pave the way for Fosu-Mensah to join another club.
Speaking at a press conference, Ranieri said: “If United want he can go because with me he does not play often and I understand he is young and he needs to play.”
With Fulham struggling against relegation, Ranieri expects to bring in reinforcements in order to steer them away from danger.
“If there will be some opportunities, the club is ready – that’s the maximum I can tell you. I’m expecting,” he said.
Fulham could be without summer signing Alfie Mawson for some time.
The centre-back is struggling with a knee injury, making it all the more likely that the club will bring in a defender. Chelsea’s Gary Cahill is among their targets.
Ranieri said: “It’s difficult to say how long (Mawson will be absent) but it is important he recovers well.
“When something happens we have to stay calm and I prefer if the player is ready and 100 per cent.”