By Alex Stevens
West Ham are lining up a £5million move for Leeds youngster Charlie Taylor, according to a report.
Slaven Bilic is ready to turn his sights on the Championship club’s prize asset in a bid to solve the Hammers’ left-back crisis.
The Sun claim West Ham are hoping to take advantage of Taylor’s situation, with the 22-year-old in the final year of his contract and keen to quit Elland Road.
West Ham manager Bilic admitted earlier in the week that a new left-back was his “priority” after Aaron Cresswell was ruled out for four months with a knee injury.
The Hammers had agreed a loan-to-buy deal for Davide Santon form Inter Milan but Sky Sports claimed on Friday that the left-back failed a medical.
Leeds released a statement on Tuesday to confirm that a transfer request had been submitted by Taylor but said it had been rejected and the 22-year-old would not be sold this summer.
Elland Road manager Garry Monk emphasised on Thursday that he intended to build his team around the left-back this season.
Leeds’ reigning Player of the Year has just 12 months remaining on his Elland Road deal and club owner Massimo Cellino has admitted the player is not interested in renewing his contract with Monk’s side.
But the club appear determined to hang on to the academy graduate until at least the January window, which is when they sold his former team-mate Sam Byram earlier this year.
Taylor has firmly established himself as Leeds’ first-choice left-back and made 42 appearances for the Whites last season, chipping in with seven assists.
It remains to be seen whether Monk will opt to use Taylor against QPR in the team’s Championship curtain-raiser on Sunday.
In other Leeds transfer news, here is there expected lineup for the QPR tie and one big star is expected to be axed.