Newcastle United are reportedly keen to hijack Arsenal's move for highly-rated Ipswich Town defender Tyrone Mings.
However, the Magpies have joined the race and will test McCarthy's resolve before the transfer window closes, according to The Mirror.
The report goes on to state that Newcastle would prefer to tie up a deal this month in the belief that the competition will be stiffer come the summer.
Mings, said to be valued at £10m, has started 22 Championship games this season as the Tractor Boys sit outside the automatic promotion places on goal difference.
His contract expires in 2017.