West Ham have made Phil Jones one of their three leading centre-back targets after a U-turn but he is not the first choice, Football Insider understands.
David Moyes is in the market for a new central defender, most likely on loan, as he is not convinced by Fabian Balbuena while Issa Diop had a mixed 2019-20 campaign.
A West Ham source has told Football Insider that Moyes was previously ambivalent towards the prospect of signing Jones, 28, when he was suggested earlier in the summer.
He questioned whether the 27-times England international has the “desire” to reignite a career that saw him make just two Premier League appearances last season.
Jones is also on a bumper United deal – a four-year agreement handed to him last year – worth well in excess of £100,000-a-week.
But West Ham believe they can circumnavigate that issue by negotiating a loan deal in which they would pay only a portion of the defender’s wages.
That would give Jones the chance to prove he still has the hunger to play regularly for a leading top-flight club.
Moyes nevertheless regards the long-serving United man as a potential back-up option to his first choice John Stones, while he also has an interest in Brighton’s Shane Duffy.
Man United are likely to listen to offers for Jones this summer despite his new contract last year.
He has spent nine years at Old Trafford and made 224 appearances since joining from Blackburn Rovers.
But the Sir Alex Ferguson signing is a fringe figure these days and has played in just eight matches across all competitions this season.
In other news, it can be REVEALED that a West Ham star has jetted out out overseas for talks over a big-money transfer.