Speculation is starting to gather pace over West Ham United’s transfer targets for the January window.
David Moyes is determined to continue building a new-look West Ham side around young, athletic players hungry to prove themselves on the big stage.
Moyes already has a promising young core of Tomas Soucek, Declan Rice, Pablo Fornals, Said Benrahma, Jarrod Bowen and – if he can rediscover his best form – Issa Diop.
Hammers still light in key areas ahead of January window
That’s not to mention emerging talent such as Ben Johnson, Aji Alese, Jamal Baptiste and Conor Coventry.
But the Hammers are still short in some areas.
And consistent transfer rumours of late suggest the Scot wants to stick to the Red Bull blueprint he has taken inspiration from.
West Ham failed to properly address some weaknesses in the squad during the summer window.
The Hammers are short of strength in depth at left-back, centre-back, goalkeeper, defensive midfield and up front.
With less than six weeks to go until the January window opens, Moyes does not have to wait long to address that.
Moyes has around £5-6m to play with and reports suggest he will use it wisely
There has been no change to the financial outlook for Premier League clubs given the global health crisis.
And money was an issue for West Ham in the last window.
Moyes had around £30m of his transfer kitty left over, but most of that is committed to signing Benrahma – as long as he passes a second medical at the end of his season-long loan.
Having paid a sizeable loan fee – which is deducted from the transfer fee when the move is made permanent – West Ham must pay Brentford an initial £20m for Benrahma with another £5m in add-ons should various clauses be met over time.
That leaves Moyes around £5-6m to play with in January if no extra funds are to be forthcoming from co-owners David Sullivan and David Gold.
Four signings in the Red Bull blueprint for minimal outlay
And reports are intensifying that West Ham are looking to sign four players in January for a combined £5.5m.
Speculation has been rife that a deal is on the cards for promising Danish centre-back Frederik Alves Ibsen (90Min).
He was recently pictured at the Stratford hotel near the London Stadium and will sign as one for the near future for around £1.2m if West Ham can get the deal over the line with his club Silkeborg.
Fresh speculation is also linking Read Madrid striker Mariano Diaz with a loan move to east London (The Daily Mail).
Todo Fichajes also claims that West Ham have already contacted Madrid about taking the 27-year-old on loan for the remainder of the season.
It is suggested that the Los Blancos ace is one of Moyes’s priority signings and is keen on the move.
In an attempt to address the left-back issue, The Daily Mail claims Moyes also wants German Kai Wagner from MLS side Philadelphia Reunion in a deal with £3.5m.
And the midfield problem could be solved with a bargain £500,000 move for Sheffield United star John Lundstram.
The powerful, box-to-box Blades midfield ace signed his first pro contract under Moyes at Everton.
His contract is up in the summer. And Sheffield United boss Chris Wilder has admitted defeat in trying to persuade Lundstram to stay (Sky Sports).
West Ham have been heavily linked with the 26-year-old (Sky Sports). And speculation suggests he could be picked up in January for as little as £500k.
What an astute window that could turn out to be.