Mohamed Diame has proved a revelation since joining West Ham last summer, with a string of superlative displays leading to interest from some of the Premier League’s most famous sides.
And Hammers chief Sam Allardyce’s admittance that Diame is yet to sign a new Upton Park contract has alerted a number of potential suitors for his services, most notably Arsenal.
Arsene Wenger is keen to add some steel to his midfield, and sees Diame as an ideal option, with the tough-tackling box-to-box midfielder very much in the Patrick Vieira mould.
Diame, 25, has a buy-out clause in his current Hammers deal, and with that contract due to expire this summer, the Senegalese international would be available for a knock-down fee.
And Hammers officials are well aware of this fact, hence their desperation to seal an arrangement with Diame that would see the player’s buy-out clause cease to exist.
Gunners boss Wenger is reportedly ready to test West Ham’s resolve with a £3.5 million bid sooner rather than later though, should the midfielder fail to pen fresh terms with the East London outfit.
“The owners have tried to renegotiate the contract, but they haven’t been successful at the moment,” Allardyce told reporters.
Successful renegotiation would not only vastly improve the Hammers’ bargaining power, it would also prove a popular decision amongst fans, who have taken to the midfield destroyer since his summer arrival.
It could also go some way to fending off interest from other clubs, as Arsenal’s great rivals Tottenham are also believed to be in the frame for Diame’s signature.
An injury to Sandro has thrown Andre Villas-Boas’ plans into disarray, and the Spurs manager wants to swell his ranks with the addition of a midfield spoiler.
Diame fits the bill, and the North London rivals could be set to go head-to-head for the ex-Wigan star.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.