Any remote hopes West Ham United may have had of landing Ivory Coast striker Nicolas Pepe appear doomed.
West Ham have tasked director of football Mario Husillos with scouring Europe for top talent.
Co-owners David Sullivan and David Gold backed manager Manuel Pellegrini with £100million last summer.
This summer’s spending will need to reach similar levels if the Chilean is to have any chance of pushing the club forward.
Hammers recruitment markedly improved
Recruitment since Pellegrini and Husillos teamed up in East London has been markedly improved.
The captures of Issa Diop, Felipe Anderson and Lukasz Fabianski have made a huge impact.
Young Portuguese duo Xande Silva and Mesaque Dju have also been brought in with a view to competing for a first team spot in the coming seasons.
One player who is on the radar of several clubs is teenage Ivorian winger Nicolas Pepe.
Ex Hammer Fonte predicted England move for rising star Pepe
The 23-year-old has scored an impressive 31 goals in 67 games for Lille from the wing.
That has spiked interest in the forward. But as is often the case the European elite will not be convinced until Pepe has done it in a top league.
West Ham do have an ‘in’ at Lille in the shape of former Hammer Jose Fonte. The Portuguese recently predicted the 6ft powerhouse will move to England this summer (Telefoot).
“For me, it is England (next for Pepe),” Fonte told Telefoot.
“I think that this is possible for him, everything is possible for him.
“He has the talent for that.”
But any West Ham pipe dream to capture Pepe looks doomed.
West Ham’s Pepe pipe dream doomed thanks to Adidas?
That’s after BeIN Sports claimed German giants Bayern Munich are close to securing a deal for the star.
BeIN Sports claims the Bavarian giants have made a bid that comes close to £70m. The report even claims sportswear giant Adidas are involved in attempting to finalise the transfer and will front some of the transfer fee if a deal goes through.
West Ham face having to overhaul their striker options this summer.
Andy Carroll is out of contract and will be released. Marko Arnautovic looks set to be sold while Javier Hernandez and Lucas Perez are expected to leave for La Liga.
The Hammers have been linked with a host of young emerging stars. Maxi Gomez, Ruben Dias, Jota, Dani Olmo and Pepe have all been linked.
It shows West Ham are approaching recruitment the right way.
Instead of signing players past their best, Pellegrini must be looking to snare players before they become established stars if they want to build a young powerful team.