West Ham have joined a host of Italian top flight sides in hunting the signing of 17-year-old goalkeeper Marco Meneghetti from Pordenone, according to a reliable journalist.

Italian report Gianluca Di Marzio, who has established himself as one of the most reputable sports journalists in Europe, has claimed on his website that the Hammers have placed the prodigal talent on their transfer shortlist, with several Serie A sides also hunting his capture.

The youngster made his debut for Pordenone, who play in Italy’s third tier, at the beginning of February, coming off the bench to play 45 minutes against Feralpisalo in a 3-0 defeat, although Meneghetti himself kept a clean sheet after all the goals came in the first half.

He has been a regular substitute for the Italian side, with 17 appearances on the bench, and is the youngest ever player to turn out in the third division in Italy.

Football Insider verdict

Clubs always need to prepare for the future and it looks as though West Ham are eyeing up some fresh talent between the sticks for the years to come. Meneghetti may be attracting attention as a result of his appearance off the bench but the fact he returned to being a substitute for his next game suggests he is some way off being ready for first team action, and considering this is Italy’s third tier he is playing in, it would be a big risk for West Ham to take him to England right now. Still, the interest from Serie A sides suggest there is a bright talent there, and if the Hammers could pull off a value-for-money deal, then it could turn out to be a great coup.

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In other West Ham news, Mark Lawrenson has predicted the club’s clash against Swansea City.

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