West Ham: Club prepare for Payet bids; replacement lined up; battle for in-form striker
After quotes attributed to Dimitri Payet emerged which appeared to link the Frenchman with a move away from West Ham in January after what he described as a “poor start”, the club are now preparing for offers according to the Evening Standard. Paris Saint-Germain were lurking in the summer and a bid is expected in January, but club bosses will not accept anything less than at least three times the £11 million paid for him last summer.
Payet is in demand but the Hammers do have some negotiating power given that he signed a five and a half year deal in February as they tied down their star man after he set the Premier League alight in the first half of his debut season at the club. Since then, he has shone for club and country and there are a host of suitors waiting for him.
The Standard also claim that the Irons have already identified a replacement in the form of unwanted Chelsea midfielder Cesc Fabregas. The Spaniard, who has also played for Arsenal and Barcelona, may not come cheap but the Blues are open to offers and are hoping to get him off their wage bill as soon as possible and may even subsidise a loan move until the summer.
Fabregas would undoubtedly bring an upgrade in quality in central midfield but is not a like for like replacement for Payet and lacks the matchwinning magic which has seen Payet become such a fan favourite at the club.
The Mirror report that the club have a new target as they seek to resolve their striker crisis by facing a battle alongside Everton, Sunderland, West Brom, Stoke and Aston Villa in an attempt to sign Polish forward Lukasz Teodorczyk. The Dynamo Kiev man is currently on loan at Anderlecht in Belgium and has already scored on 14 occasions this season to be one of Europe’s top goalscorers.
The 25-year-old has been valued at £12 million which may not pose a problem, but the interest of a host of other Premier League clubs and European giants like Borussia Dortmund and AC Milan may make the deal difficult.
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