Nathan Holland is set to join Oxford United on loan from West Ham this week after being deemed “too lightweight” by David Moyes, Football Insider can reveal.
The Hammers winger, 21, has been given the green light to head to the League One promotion challengers after being an unused substitute in Sunday’s 2-0 FA Cup win against Gillingham.
A West Ham source has told Football Insider that new manager Moyes shares the view of predecessor Manuel Pellegrini that Holland is not ready to challenge for a first team place.
The Scot is eager for the wide forward to get regular game time at a senior, high level rather than continue playing Under-23s football, where he has been a dominant figure this season.
The source explained that Moyes and the Hammers staff want Holland to toughen up in League One as they believe he is currently “too lightweight” for Premier League football.
The terms of a loan deal have been agreed with Oxford and the youngster is set to head out later this week, following the successful completion of Sunday’s FA Cup clash.
Holland can play on both wings and in the number 10 role, but failed to add to his four senior appearances against Gillingham as he watched a full strength side secure progress to the fourth round.
Football Insider revealed in late August how Pellegrini had put the block on Holland going out on loan in the first half of the campaign amid interest from the likes of Bolton Wanderers.
The Manchester-born former Everton youth teamer has been widely tipped to be the next Hammers youngster to make a big impression at first-team level.
Capped by England at Under-19 level, he has scored 11 goals and supplied six assists from 12 Premier League 2 matches this season.
In other West Ham news, it can be REVEALED that the club have opened talks with Joe Cole.