West Ham United have this evening submitted a £14.5 million bid for Marseille defender Duje Caleta-Car as David Moyes seeks to address his lack of defensive options.
That’s according to breaking news reports in France on Friday evening.
According to L’Equipe and Get French Football News, West Ham have submitted a bid of €14m (£12m) plus another €3m (£2.5m) for the Croatia centre back.
But Marseille are said to be holding out for €20m (£17m) from the Hammers.
West Ham have been heavily linked with Caleta-Car since making a bid last year.
Moyes needs a new defender after the departure of Fabian Balbuena and with Angelo Ogbonna turning 34 next season.
So that makes the bid for Caleta-Car something of a surprise.
It is highly unlikely West Ham will sign both players. So it could be that the Hammers have admitted defeat trying to lure Milenkovic or are trying to force Fiorentina’s hand by making a bid for Caleta-Car.
But according to L’Equipe Caleta-Car is not interested in a move to West Ham.
“Duje Caleta-Car had refused to engage with the English West Ham, preferring to play a third season with OM and discover the Champions League,” L’Equipe reports.
“A transfer scaffolded by Pablo Longoria, then sporting director, and agents of Stellar Group.
“In January 2021, Liverpool had considered recruiting the central defender (on loan with option to buy or via a dry transfer, sources differ), but OM wanted to keep him. He had finished his season small, with mediocre performances, before being titular with Croatia during the Euro.
“A first offer with a fixed base of €14 million. The Premier League has not forgotten it, however. If Tottenham’s supposed interest was a figment of the imagination, West Ham has returned to the news.
“In recent days, the London club has sketched out a first offer with a fixed base of €14M, which can rise to around €17M with bonuses. OM, who had hired him for nearly €19m (including bonus) in July 2018, would like an amount around €20m for the 24-year-old, under contract until June 2023. Negotiations are continuing, so that other English clubs are on the lookout.”