By Amir Mir
West Ham are the frontrunners to sign AC Milan forward M’Baye Niang, according to the latest betting odds.
Leading bookmaker Sky Bet have made the London-based club favourites to sign the European attacking ace before 3 Febuary at odds of 4/1, ahead of Arsenal, who are priced at 6/1.
Sky Sports in Italy claimed on Tuesday afternoon that the Hammers are interested in signing the 22-year-old, who is valued at £13million by his current club.
It is said the Serie A giants would consider loaning out Niang this month with the option to buy the youngster permanently in the summer.
Slaven Bilic’s side are on the lookout for another attacker as for the majority of this Premier League campaign they have struggled for form.
In recent weeks there has been a small revival, however, with wantaway playmaker Dimitri Payet most likely heading for the exit door, another attacking option is needed.
It is also claimed by Sky in Italy that Premier League duo Everton and Crystal Palace are interested in signing Niang.
The Toffees are 16/1 to sign the versatile attacker, while Palace are even further out at odds of 18/1.
Football Insider verdict:
Niang is a young and highly promising talent. This is a deal the Hammers should not shy away from and should opt to take on. Bilic’s side are currently close to signing Brentford forward Scott Hogan for a not too dissimilar fee. Even though Hogan has more experience in English football, the London-based club would be better off taking a punt on Niang because he has played at a higher level and is regarded as a better prospect than his forward counterpart. One problematic area for the Premier League side has been their failure to land a regular goalscorer. Andy Carroll has probably been the exception, but his injury history has not helped him. However, he has since returned to his goalscoring form and target-man Carroll would work well with Niang’s pace and versatility in the final third.
In other West Ham transfer news, the club has been sounded out after this Premier League winner asks for a January move.