Leeds have stolen a march on West Ham in the race for reported top David Moyes target Weston McKennie after opening talks.

West Ham and Leeds United have some history in the transfer market in the recent past.

The Hammers are still awaiting for a compensation figure to be set by a tribunal after Leeds poached young striker Sonny Perkins in the summer.

Leeds left West Ham furious with that move and the two clubs played out a feisty 2-2 draw recently as they both battle to stay in the Premier League.

The January transfer window could play a major role in the fight for survival with West Ham and Leeds two of eight clubs potentially involved.

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Given their precarious positions in the Premier League, any advantage Moyes or Jesse Marsch can gain with new arrivals could prove decisive.

The Hammers and Whites have been linked with mutual interest in the likes of Terem Moffi and Azzedine Ounahi.

Now Leeds have stolen a march on West Ham in the race for reported top Moyes target McKennie after opening talks.

According to longstanding reports, Juventus and USA midfielder McKennie is the man West Ham have targeted as Declan Rice’s eventual replacement (BeSoccerTuttosportThe Times).

But now it seems Moyes may be fighting a losing battle to bring McKennie to West Ham as Marsch eyes a link-up with his fellow American.

With no movement in their pursuit of Ounahi, Leeds are now in talks with Juve over a deal for reported potential Rice heir McKennie.

Transfer reporter Fabrizio Romano has relayed claims from Italy that Leeds are exploring a move for McKennie.

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And it comes after the midfielder spoke about why he works well alongside Leeds and fellow US midfielder Tyler Adams (90min).

It all seems rather ominous for West Ham, who have priorities up front and in central defence in January.

Moyes is not necessarily looking to bring in his eventual Rice replacement this month. So Leeds moving now could take the player off his radar for the summer, when Rice is widely expected to be sold.

On the flip side, if Leeds do land McKennie it may clear the path for West Ham to renew their reported interest in Ounahi (90Min).

The likes of L’Équipe have claimed Ounahi’s transfer away from Angers is ‘inevitable’ this month.

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