The UK's Office of Fair Trading is expected to investigate any attempt by Sports Direct to acquire 180 stores from rival JJB Sports, which is expected to file for administration this week, according to reports.

Sports Direct is considering fewer than 50 of the stores, The Independent reported. It added that even with interest from JD Sports, it is considered likely that more than 100 shops will close, with the loss of at least 2,000 jobs.

JJB is expected to appoint administrators this week in a pre-pack deal that will allow a new owner to buy it out of technical insolvency, with fewer stores and less debt, the report said.

Restructuring company GA Europe is believed to have submitted an offer for the retailer, while OpCapita, Better Capital and sporting goods retailer Decathlon were also rumoured to have received information on the company.

JJB Sports put itself up for sale at the end of August, after its directors admitted they did not believe they could raise the funds necessary to implement a turnaround.