Darren Bent is “hearing” that Josh King is seeking an enormous £100,000-a-week wage and claimed West Ham would be “crazy” to bow to his demands.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former England goalscorer made his comments as the Mail report the Hammers are readying a £16million offer for the 29-year-old Bournemouth forward.
West Ham had a £13m bid for the player rejected last summer and Football Insider has been told that Burnley are pushing hard for King this month.
David Moyes is in need of a striker after Sebastien Haller’s Ajax departure, with Michail Antonio now the only recognised centre-forward on the books.
But King is not the answer, says Darren Bent, not at that price anyway.
He told Football Insider: “There’s no way on the planet West Ham are gonna pay that much for him. And if you look at his stats, he’s not scored a goal in the league yet.
“I’m hearing about wage demands too, really high demands of around £100,000 a week. That is crazy.
“If his stats were a lot better than they are, I could sympathise with him. But Bournemouth have been flying high this season and he hasn’t scored a single goal.
“I wouldn’t say he’s vital to the way they place, they’re more about Stanislas and Solanke.
“Even throughout his career, he got six goals last season, 12 the year before that, eight the year before that. His best season was 2106-17 and that was a long time ago.
“So bid £13m, fair enough, but £16m is far too much. No way.”
King is by no means the only forward we have seen linked with a move to East London in recent weeks.
Youssef En-Nesyri was apparently the subject of a £27m bid, while Championship top-scorer Adam Armstrong has also been linked.