By Noel Whelan

4th Jan, 2020 | 10:53am

'Great acquisition' - Exclusive: Pundit reacts as West Ham ready bid for 39-cap int'l

Noel Whelan says he doubts Middlesbrough will allow West Ham to sign goalkeeper Darren Randolph this month.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, the former Leeds and Boro striker says the 32-year-old would be a great signing for the Irons but he cannot see Jonathan Woodgate selling up.

Football Insider have exclusively revealed that the Hammers are set to launch a new bid for the Middlesbrough goalkeeper after their initial offer was rejected by the Championship club.

Whelan insists that Randolph ticks a lot of the boxes that David Moyes will be looking for in a backup goalkeeper but questions whether his current club will be willing to part ways this month.

Whelan told Football Insider: “He’s an international, knows the Premier League, been around a long time, experience, British goalkeeper – he’d be a great acquisition.

“David Moyes knows how important it is to have somebody who can talk, who can motivate, that can organise. He’s definitely got the experience to do that and he would be a good signing.

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“Whether or not Middlesbrough will allow it to happen, I very much doubt it. Middlesbrough need him right now and Boro have really turned the corner at the minute. They’ll want to keep hold of what players they have.”

Randolph had been a mainstay at the Riverside this season before suffering an injury blow which has left him sidelined since November, the 39-cap international sitting out the club’s last nine league games.

He already has experience of playing for the Hammers under his belt, featuring 42 times between 2015 and 2017.

In other West Ham news, Darren Bent says a recent sighting is “like a big signing” for the Hammers.