The Telegraph have claimed that West Ham United and Crystal Palace were among a number of Premier League sides to make enquiries for Chelsea defender Reece James in the summer, only for Frank Lampard to reject a move.
James, 19, starred for Championship side Wigan Athletic on loan last season. He clocked up 46 appearances in all competitions for Paul Cook’s side, showing versatility by playing in his natural position of right-back, as well as centre-back and midfield.
He has returned to Chelsea and is being considered as one of the youngsters expected to be given a chance by Frank Lampard, who has been unable to bring in new players because of the club’s transfer ban.
The likes of Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount, Fikayo Tomori and more are expected to be in with a shout of playing in the first team this season. James is another, and the latest report claims West Ham and Palace were among eight sides to enquire.
TBR’s view – James would have been an excellent signing for West Ham
Not only is the England youth international showing exceptional talent and promise for a 19-year-old, but James is also showing quality in three separate positions.
The Hammers could do with a new right-back, as Zabaleta has entered the final 12 months of his contract at the London Stadium. Ryan Fredericks has been somewhat hit and miss since his move to West Ham.
James would have been an ideal replacement.