According to a report from Sportal, West Ham are interested in signing Atalanta midfielder Ruslan Malinovskyi this summer. But the Hammers could face a problem, with a report claiming that Chelsea legend Claude Makalele is pushing the 26-year-old towards a move to Stamford Bridge.
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Hammers boss David Moyes will undoubtedly be keen to bolster his central midfield ranks this summer.
Carlos Sanchez is almost certain to leave West Ham at the end of the season. Whilst club captain Mark Noble has massively regressed over the past 12 months.
Declan Rice is also being heavily linked with an exit.
And Sportal claims that the Hammers could move to address that issue by bringing in Atalanta ace Ruslan Malinovskyi before the start of next season.
But now Chelsea could pose a threat to West Ham’s chances of signing the Ukraine international.
Tribal Football claims that the 47-year-old Frenchman is driving the Blues’ interest in the Atalanta ace.
The 26-year-old has racked up five goals and three assists in 31 games for the Serie A outfit so far this season (Transfermarkt).
In 22 league appearances this season, Malinovskyi has averaged 24.8 passes per game with a very impressive completion rate of 82.1%. He has also averaged 1.3 key passes per game during those outings (Who Scored).
Malinovskyi joined Atalanta last summer for around €14 million (£12 million), according to Calcio Mercato.
So the Italians would surely expect a similar fee this summer.
And that kind of money would represent an excellent bargain for whichever club wins the race for his signature.
It just remains to be seen whether West Ham manage to fight off Chelsea. With Makalele’s influence, however, that might just be a hard thing to do.
It might end up coming down to who actually wants the Ukrainian more out of Frank Lampard and David Moyes.