The Athletic journalist David Ornstein has delivered a major update on West Ham United’s transfer plans.
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According to talkSPORT presenter Jim White, a close confidant of West Ham co-owner David Sullivan, the Hammers are working on three transfer deals.
West Ham are looking to make Said Benrahma’s loan deal – which had an obligation to buy in the summer anyway – permanent hell six months early.
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That is to reportedly to free up a domestic loan slot in West Ham’s squad for the signing of Manchester United outcast Jesse Lingard.
Speculation has been rife that West Ham are in talks to sign Lingard on loan (Sky Sports).
David Moyes is said to be a huge fan of Lingard from their time together at Old Trafford.
Speaking on talkSPORT’s White and Jordan with Trevor Sinclair show White also claimed West Ham are ‘hell bent’ on signing a striker before Monday’s transfer deadline.
But now respected Athletic reporter Ornstein has provided an update which may actually disappoint West Ham fans.
Ornstein delivers major transfer update, claims Moyes could shelve striker signing if he lands Man United man
On Wednesday afternoon, Ornstein claimed on The Athletic that Moyes may ditch trying to sign a striker if he gets Lingard over the line.
The inference is that Moyes might use Lingard in a forward role if needed.
“Jesse Lingard’s loan move to West Ham United is likely to go through,” Ornstein reports on The Athletic.
“But the east London club are expected to pay a loan fee of around £1 million, which is lower than the figure Manchester United initially requested. To facilitate the move, Said Benrahma’s loan from Brentford will be made permanent by West Ham…
“The Athletic understands that the arrival of Lingard could see West Ham not sign a striker this window after the exit of Sebastien Haller.”
Ornstein followed that up on Twitter saying: “If the Lingard deal gets done, it may mean West Ham shelve their plans to sign a striker this month — but as always a lot can happen in the last few days of the window.
“Nothing definite, but it’s possible.”
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Lingard certainly has the athleticism, mobility and pace to operate as a forward.
And he has played as a false nine before. Moyes has worked with the player so knows full well what he is capable of.
Perhaps Moyes feels Lingard is another wide player he can convert into a striker.
He has a good track record having successfully converted Michail Antonio and Marko Arnautovic. And he is currently trialling the same thing with Andriy Yarmolenko.
But West Ham fans will undoubtedly be disappointed if the club do not bring in a recognised striker. Especially given Antonio himself is a converted winger.
Time is running out. But it seems – as ever – West Ham are in a mad rush to finalise their deals before the deadline.