In Focus: New deal for West Ham target Carvalho could force them to look elsewhere

According to reports in The Sun, West Ham United have been dealt a blow in their attempts to reignite their bid to sign Sporting Lisbon midfielder William Carvalho in January, with the Portuguese club ready to offer their player a new contract.

What’s the word, then?

Well, The Sun says that the Irons were desperate to sign the Portugal international during the summer, but they failed to agree a fee with Sporting and a huge row broke out between the two boards after the transfer window slammed shut.

The Sun says that the 25-year-old was keen on the move to the London Stadium despite the fact that he would be giving up Champions League football, and the Hammers were hopeful of resurrecting a deal either in the New Year or at the end of the season.

However, The Sun says that Sporting are keen to hold on to their prized asset for at least another season and are ready to hand him a bumper new contract.

The report adds that the new deal could see his current release clause of £40m swell to £54m.

How has Carvalho done this season?

Despite all of the speculation surrounding his future during the summer, the 25-year-old has made seven appearances in all competitions for Sporting and captained them in their last four Liga NOS matches, while he also featured in the Champions League defeat against Barcelona.

Is he likely to sign a new deal?

It’s difficult to say.

While a move to a Premier League club like West Ham may be tempting, Carvalho could also believe that he could get a move to an even bigger team if he carries on performing well for Sporting in the Champions League.

If that is the case then Slaven Bilic and the Hammers may be fighting a losing battle, and the potential £54m release clause would certainly be beyond their reach.

Do West Ham need him?

They certainly do.

While their results have picked up in recent weeks, they still look a little weak in the middle of the park and the likes of Cheikhou Kouyate and Mark Noble aren’t being as effective in central midfield as they have been in the past.

Carvalho would certainly bring some strength, steel and a protective barrier in front of the defence, which would help the Irons concede fewer goals.