West Ham starlet Conor Coventry has rejected the club’s offer of a new deal amid fears he could quit in January, Football Insider understands.
The midfielder, 19, is out of contract at the end of the season and talks over an extension are locked in a stalemate.
A West Ham source has told Football Insider that Coventry is holding out for a £5,000-a-week deal while the club are reluctant to make such a commitment to player in their Under-23s.
The Hammers hierarchy have had their fingers burned in the past by paying Reece Oxford a massive salary while he was still in his teens and before he had proved himself.
They bided their time before rewarding another homegrown star, Declan Rice, with a lucrative contract and that only came after he had established himself in the first team.
Coventry is highly rated but has just two first-team appearances under his belt, both of which have come in the League Cup.
West Ham want proof that Coventry can cut it in the Premier League before handing him a deal worth the equivalent of £260,000-a-year.
It could mean the player looks to one of the many clubs in January ready to offer him improved terms as well as a pathway into their first team.
Coventry is the captain and fulcrum of the Hammers’ Under-23s side and has played the full 90 minutes in 10 of those games already this season.
The Republic of Ireland youth international was included in the Hammers’ first-team photograph in August and was given eight minutes as a substitute in the 2-0 League Cup win over Newport County in late August.