Andy Carroll looked set to leave West Ham United but could he now stay after Manuel Pellegrini cooled interest in his potential replacement.
Carroll’s six-year contract is up in the summer.
And after spending more time in the treatment room than on the pitch during his Hammers career was uncertain.
The big striker has recently returned to action after five months out since picking up an injury in West Ham’s first pre-season match in the summer.
He changed the game in West Ham’s favour as a second half substitute in the 3-2 win over Crystal Palace last time out.
And Pellegrini told Sky Sports he hopes Carroll will do enough to prove he deserves a new deal.
Hammers had Sala lined up as Carroll replacement
Before the big Geordie’s latest comeback West Ham were heavily linked with a January move for Nantes striker Emiliano Sala (The Mirror).
The 6ft 3in Argentine has only ever played in France and never for his national team.
But Sala looks ideally suited to English football.
He is well into double figures already for the season. And that comes after a number of seasons consistently netting around 12 goals.
Report suggests West Ham have cooled interest
West Ham were said to be leading the race for Sala.
So could it be the biggest hint yet that Carroll will be handed an extension after a new report from France suggested Pellegrini has cooled his interest in Sala.
The likes of Crystal Palace, Fulham, Cardiff City and Southampton have all been linked with Sala in a new report from France Football.
The French media outlet goes on to claim that Cardiff are favourites to land Sala for a reported £20million fee.
Carroll to earn new deal?
“Neil Warnock personally travelled to France to watch Sala recently and having held informal talks for the player already,” the report claims.
If West Ham were in for Sala they would undoubtedly be favourites among that clutch of clubs.
That suggests Pellegrini has cooled his interest.
Given the similarity between the strikers it is perhaps the biggest hint yet that Carroll could stay beyond the summer.