HITC Sport understands the Tykes want to bring in the midfielders from Leicester and Bristol City.
Barnsley are trying to spend some of their money raised this month, and want Matty James and Josh Brownhill, HITC Sport understands.
HITC Sports revealed earlier this month that Barnsley were keen on re-signing Brownhill, who spent last season on loan at Oakwell – before he joined Bristol City.
Now Barnsley are looking to take him from City and will pay over £1million – with HITC Sport understanding they have already had two bids rejected.
Barnsley are also leading the chase for Leicester midfielder James – who is has barely featured in the last 18-months due to a serious knee injury.
Leicester are willing to let the 25-year-old out on-loan and Barnsley want him with a view to a permanent deal in the summer, although Nottingham Forest are also keen,
Barnsley boss Paul Heckingbottom is anxiously looking to bolster his squad having lost Sam Winnall to Sheffield Wednesday and James Bree to Aston Villa already this month, and captain Connor Hourihane is set to follow out the exit doors – again to Villa Park.