West Ham have held positive talks with Newcastle United over an potential £12million deal for midfield star Jonjo Shelvey, according to a report.
The Express claim on their website that the Hammers are keen to bolster their options in the middle of the park and have discussed an eight-figure swoop for the Magpies’ 25-year-old, who is said to be on wages in the region of £80,000-a-week, in what is an ambitious move to secure one of their relegation rivals’ stars.
It is said that talks have progressed well in the first week of the January transfer window but that Rafael Benitez’s side are not willing to let their pass master depart without securing a replacement first, while West Ham are also said to be keen in Arsenal midfielder Francis Coquelin, Watford’s Etienne Capoue and Stoke’s Joe Allen.
Shelvey has had a hit and miss season so far, having made 16 appearances for the Magpies, scoring his first goal in the 3-1 win over Luton Town on Saturday, but has already missed five games through suspension.
Football Insider verdict
Newcastle really should be demanding more for their midfield maestro if they are considering offloading him to a relegation rival, but West Ham will not be complaining one bit. They could do with some midfield flair in their side, and Shelvey has proven to have the X-factor with his vision and range of passing. Who will Newcastle replace him with? That is a very tough question, but the do have Mikel Merino at their disposal, whose composure and dynamism may well make up for the difference in creativity between the duo. This is a deal which may be left on a knife edge until the final days of the window, though West Ham may not be willing to wait with other targets lined up.
In other West Ham news, one man is set to undergo imminent surgery after picking up an injury in the Shrewsbury draw.