Brussels is preparing to improve its Brexit trade offer amid disarray at Michel Barnier’s hardline approach.
EU chiefs said there was pressure from EU capitals to scrap its chief negotiator’s strategy.
They want to ‘leave the door open’ to Theresa May but only if she reveals what she wants from a future relationship.
Last week Mr Barnier claimed disagreements put the two-year Brexit transition period in doubt.
His threat of a ‘punishment clause’ on the UK during the transition period, which would allow the bloc to impose tariffs until 2021, has also left several EU states reeling.
But EU diplomats and officials yesterday hinted Brussels was prepared to soften its stance.
It would see the bloc offering the UK a ‘tailor-made’ trade deal, rather than a deal similar to the EU and Canada’s, which has been suggested and which Mrs May deems unacceptable.
A senior EU official said: ‘Some member states are saying ‘we can’t prescribe what the UK should do’, others are saying ‘yes but we should leave the door open’.