Noel Whelan is adamant that James Tarkowski would be a “fantastic signing” for West Ham after the club tabled Burnley an improved offer for the defender.

The former Leeds United forward, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, claimed that the bids for the 27-year-old showed that David Moyes wants to strengthen his side with “rugged, steely” British players this summer.

This site revealed yesterday that the Hammers had submitted a £28million offer for the centre-half which was rejected by Burnley.

Football Insider understands that Sean Dyche’s side have slapped a £35million price tag on the Irons and Leicester City target this summer.

Tarkowski has two years remaining on his contract at Turf Moor having joined in a £3.5million deal from Brentford in 2016.

When asked by Football Insider if the two-time England international would be a smart signing, Whelan said: “He is being looked at by many clubs.

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“A very consistent player who is a leader out on the pitch. It is no wonder that he has been a talisman for that Sean Dyche side.

“David Moyes is going British, you can see what he is doing. He wants someone who is a bit more rugged, steely and they would definitely be getting one in Tarkowski.

“He would be a fantastic signing. Someone who would fit straight into that side. You can see where David Moyes really wants to bolster and strengthen.”

Tarkowski was a key figure at the heart of a Burnley defence that kept 15 clean sheets in 38 appearances – the centre-half started every one of those games.

The Hammers have cash to spend after Grady Diangana was sold to West Brom in a deal that could rise to £18million.

In other West Ham news, Danny Mills slams senior player and claims he ‘should know better’ after major transfer update.