West Ham eye playmaker who has featured 77 minutes this season as Payet replacement - Times
By Harry Sykes
West Ham are eyeing Lyon midfielder Clement Grenier as a replacement for Dimitri Payet, according to a report.
The Times claim the east London club have considered playmaker Grenier, 26, as a possible successor to wantaway superstar Payet.
Hammers manager Slaven Bilic delivered the bombshell on Thursday that Payet wants to quit the club this month and has refused to play as he pushes for an immediate transfer.
West Ham have already rejected a £20million bid for Payet from Marseille as they hold out for a fee of between £35million and £40million for a player who turns 30 in March.
The club have already turned their eye to lining up a replacement for their star man and one player on their radar is five-time France international Grenier.
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The versatile midfielder is on the fringes of the Lyon team this season and has made just six substitute appearances – amounting to 77 minutes of action – in all competitions.
The likes of Corentin Tolisso, Sergi Darder and Maxime Gonalons all sit ahead of him in the midfield pecking order, and it appears that the Ligue 1 outfit may be willing to discuss a deal for a player.
Lyon could be tempted to cash in on their out-of-favour midfielder, who has struggled to get back in the Lyon side after missing nearly two months of the campaign with a shinbone injury.
In total, Grenier has made 115 appearances for Lyon, scoring 14 goals and supplying 20 assists in all competitions.
Football Insider verdict:
Grenier has pedigree and a good track record but also a horrible recent injury history that makes him a gamble. Is it one worth taking? On loan, maybe. Certainly not for a big-money fee. Last season he broke his thighbone which kept him out for 18 games, before fracturing his shin this season which kept him out for the majority of September and October. Bilic must consider the fitness of Grenier and his susceptibility to pick up long-term injuries, before sanctioning a move. The midfielder’s calibre is undeniable and he would certainly add some lustre to a West Ham midfield that will soon be deprived of its marquee man.
In other West Ham transfer news, a right-back has agreed terms with the club.