West Ham are one of the clubs who have expressed an interest in Joe Allen ahead of the January window, according to Wales Online.

Stoke City midfielder Allen could be on his way back to the Premier League. Top-flight quartet Burnley, Newcastle United, West Ham and Wolves have all been credited with an interest in this report.

The Potters are now under pressure to sell and trim their wage bill. Allen agreed to stay at Stoke to lead a promotion charge but, instead, they are in a relegation battle. New manager Michael O’Neill would love to keep Allen but knows it will be difficult.

If a Premier League club comes in this January, Stoke are likely to sell the Wales international. Stoke demanded £18m in the summer but will reportedly accept less than that in the new year.

Is Joe Allen what we need?

(Photo by Lewis Storey/Getty Images)

Allen offers experience at Premier League level and he can be a deep-lying midfielder. The 29-year-old is a tidy player who can offer attacking and defensive options in West Ham’s midfield.

The Hammers need to sign a new central midfielder and might be tempted if Allen’s price tag is dropping. But at 29, he does not fit the bill as an exciting young player with a sell-on value or room for improvement. It might not be worth this investment.

In conclusion, Allen would add depth and a good rotational option at West Ham. Would he take us to the promised ‘next level’? Unlikely.

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