Agent of PL speed machine reportedly eyed by West Ham delivers verdict on future
By Will Butcher
West Ham have suffered a blow in their pursuit of Manchester United attacker Anthony Martial after his agent confirmed he would remain at Old Trafford.
The Sun claim the Hammers were keen on bringing the 21-year-old to the London Stadium after a frustrating season at Old Trafford under manager Jose Mourinho.
However, the report quotes Martial’s agent Philippe Lamboley as saying that the attacker, known for his blistering pace from out wide, will see out the rest of his United contract.
“Martial has two years left and there is no reason for him to leave Manchester at the moment,” Lamboley said.
“If Ed Woodward tells me they want him to leave, things are different. But that is not what he told me during our last meeting.”
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Hammers boss Slaven Bilic is likely to invest in his options on the flanks after losing Dimitri Payet to Marseille back in January, and failing to properly replace Martial’s national teammate.
Scotland international Robert Snodgrass was bought from Hull, but he failed to score in his 15 Hammers appearances since first pulling on a claret and blue shirt.
Now, Croat manager Bilic must re-enter the market to bring in an adequate replacement for 2015-16 player of the year Payet with Martial said to be on his list.
However, with his contract set to expire in the summer of 2019, the 15-time France international is set to remain with United despite starting only 28 times this term.
Football Insider verdict:
The Hammers should be looking to do all they can to change Martial’s mind as he would prove to be the east London outfit’s marquee summer signing. Bilic’s side lack a degree of pace in the final third, making them predictable and easy to defend against. Bringing the former Monaco star to Stratford this summer would give the Hammers goals from out wide, creativity and most likely assists for target man Andy Carroll to score, but most importantly an unpredictability and excitement to the West Ham attack. It remains to be seen how much United would charge for Martial after signing him for £36million in 2015, but a fee of around £25million to £30million or a loan-to-buy deal would prove good business.
In other West Ham transfer news, it would be a big mistake to allow this 25-year-old to leave and here is why.