By Will Butcher
West Ham are set to beat London rivals Tottenham in the race to sign Argentine striker Jonathan Calleri, according to a report.
The Essex Chronicle, citing reports from Argentina and Brazil, claim the Hammers are in pole position to land the 22-year-old despite competing interest from Spurs and Italian giants Inter Milan.
It is said West Ham manager Slaven Bilic wants to push the deal through early to ensure Calleri commits to the club.
Calleri has been likened to West Ham fans favourite Carlos Tevez after an impressive spell of form in his home country, and is becoming increasingly known for skill and technical ability.
Bilic has been in the hunt for a proven goalscorer all summer, and has been linked with the likes of Christian Benteke, Michy Batshuayi, Alexandre Lacazette, Theo Walcott, Carlos Bacca as well as a sensational East London return for Tevez.
West Ham signed 20-year-old Ashley Fletcher from Manchester United earlier this week but he is not the senior front man that Bilic is targeting to immediately strengthen the first team.
Calleri, who is yet to make any Argentina appearances, has attracted Premier League interest since scoring 21 goals in 53 matches for former club Boca Juniors.
He has since been loaned to Sao Paulo for six months via Uruguayan club Deportivo Maldonado and 10 matches for the Brazilian side in 2016 have yielded an impressive eight goals.
However any deal for the youngster will be complicated as any buyer wanting to negotiate a permanent deal would have to buy his third party investment. One benefit though, is that Calleri can move to West Ham without a work permit because of his Italian grandparents.
In other West Ham transfer news, The Hammers have made an audacious bid to sign this Real Madrid star.