West Ham’s 10 most likely transfer targets this summer

With the gates now firmly closed at Upton Park and the Olympic Stadium all but ready, a new era for West Ham United is dawning.

European football, an astute and well-loved manager, over 50,000 season tickets already sold and Dimitri Payet means the Hammers will undoubtedly be a competitive force come the opening day of the 2016/17 season.

However, with higher expectancy levels comes higher pressure to improve a squad who will be competing on four fronts come August.

Despite conceding the same number of goals as Crystal Palace last season (51), West Ham’s intrepid chairmen, the delectable double act of David Sullivan and David Gold, seem to be on the hunt for offensive options and have not been shy in telling the media who they are bidding for.

We’ve picked out 10 players that we think West Ham are likely to try and lure to east London this summer…

Gokhan Tore

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The Turkish international will likely be a familiar name to Hammers fans, after reports in March suggested that Gokhan Tore was on the verge of signing for the club.

Tore is certainly no stranger to Slavan Bilic either, after working with the 24-year-old winger at Besiktas. Speaking to the media last year, Bilic said of Tore, “I have always said that Gokhan could play at any European team, he has both the quality and the potential,”

Tore’s chances of moving to West Ham may be dependent on his performances with Turkey at the European Championship this summer.

Alexandre Lacazette

Lacazette1

Hardly the biggest secret in football, the latest chapter in the West Ham and Lacazette saga is a rumoured bid of £31m rejected by the Frenchman’s current club Lyon.

It seems that the 24-year-old is the number one target for the Hammers this summer and it is easy to see why.

Lacazette has scored 54 goals in 83 games over the last two years for his club but has missed out on a place in the French squad at this years’ European Championship. National team manager Didier Deschamps has suggested that a move to a ‘bigger’ club may be needed for Lacazette to progress.

Theo Walcott

Walcott

The stagnation of Theo Walcott’s career at Arsenal has been frustrating to say the least. From being touted as the saviour of English football to the devastation of exclusion from England’s European Championship squad.

A fresh start for the now 27-year-old could be exactly what both he and England need. With West Ham also likely to utilise the former Saints man as a striker, Walcott could finally gain a regular spot in the position he has desired for a decade at Arsenal.

It is understood that West Ham will need to stump up a fee of around £20m to land the wide-man.

Matt Ritchie

Ritchie

Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe may well have been left fuming after West Ham submitted a bid for Matt Ritchie and Callum Wilson before the Cherries has even played their last Premier League game.

While the aforementioned bid was swiftly rejected, it would come as no surprise to see Ritchie desperate to start a new chapter with West Ham, especially as the Scottish international has spent the majority of his career in the lower leagues.

No further bids for Ritchie have been made as of yet, but don’t be surprised to see the Hammers look back toward the South Coast if some other targets fail to materialise.

Roberto Pereyra

Pereyra

Since joining Juventus permanently at the start of the season, Roberto Pereyra has drifted down the pecking order and has only amassed 13 appearances for the Old Lady since August.

However, the Argentine international was a revelation at former club Udinese and his adaptability to any role across the midfield would make him a worthwhile addition to the West Ham squad.

Jamie Vardy

6Vardy

With rumours that Jamie Vardy may have a £25 million buy-out clause in his Leicester contract and West Ham willing to spend big money on a star striker, this rumour may have more concrete foundations than first thought.

Vardy offers value for money in comparison with other European strikers that West Ham are pursuing. A proven goal scorer in the Premier League and a likely starter for England in the European Championships, £25 million represents great value in today’s market.

Christian Benteke

Benteke4

It appears as though Christian Benteke’s disappointing career at Liverpool will come to an abrupt end this summer, with the Belgian seemingly not a part of Jurgen Klopp’s future plans.

However, despite his dire performances for Liverpool, the 25 year-old is, with the right players around him, unplayable at times. The likes of Payet, Manuel Lanzini and Michail Antonio could all compliment Benteke and his brutish, powerful aerial threat.

It is thought that Benteke would have to take a significant wage cut to join the Hammers, something which may not sit well with the striker and his agent.

Callum Wilson

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Along with team mate Matt Ritchie, Callum Wilson was the subject of a £25 million bid from West Ham earlier this month. While Bournemouth swiftly rejected the offer, rumours are still abound regarding this possible transfer.

Despite Wilson’s obviously qualities, this seems an odd transfer target for the Hammers. The striker had a phenomenal start to the season with Bournemouth before a season ending injury. However, with just a few months of Premier League experience and no indication as to whether his injury may affect his future form, this could be a gamble should West Ham decide to go back in for the 24-year-old.

Andre Ayew

AyewSwans

Just over a fortnight ago, West Ham fans stood in awe as they watched a Swansea side, featuring Andre Ayew, spoil what was the penultimate Premier League game at the Boleyn.

The Ghanaian has been exceptional since his move to South Wales, contributing 12 goals in a tough season at the Liberty Stadium.

Ayew’s raw pace, genuine enthusiasm and keen eye for goal could fast make him a fans’ favourite should West Ham decide to bring him to East London.

Michy Batshuayi

One of the rising stars of the European game, Michy Batshuayi will be heading to the European Championship with Belgium after another stellar season with Marseille.

Now, the French club have confirmed that the 22-year-old will leave this summer and West Ham are thought to be one of a number of clubs chasing his signature.

However, Marseille are likely to ask upwards of £30 million for Batshuayi, which may dissuade interested parties who are looking for a player with more European experience.