Desperate Hammers to offer Jermain Defoe January homecoming

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West Ham’s urgent need for a striker could be set to lead them back to one of their own, with a move for Jermain Defoe reported in the press.

The former England international may be 35, but he remains as sharp as ever in front of goal, saving Sunderland last season with 15 Premier League strikes.

And with eight goals in 14 games this time around, Defoe is still plenty capable of doing a job in the top-flight.

The Hammers’s strikers have netted just twice this term, and one of those came from Diafra Sakho, who has been ruled out for eight weeks.

Slaven Bilic has already been linked with moves for either Marcus Rashford or Anthony Martial at Manchester United, plus Callum Wilson at Bournemouth and Brentford hotshot Scott Hogan.

But at £6m, Defoe could represent better value than most of those aforementioned stars, with Wilson reportedly set to cost at least £25m, and Hogan £15m.

The bookies make West Ham 5/1 favourites to land Defoe next month, with the Englishman 12/1 to join Crystal Palace and 14s to head to Middlesbrough.

West Ham were the fifth-highest scorers last season, but this time around, only five sides have scored fewer than the east London outfit.

The Defoe news won’t be welcome on Wearside, with Defoe netting over half of the Black Cats’ goals this season.

And, with only Victor Anichebe and Patrick van Aanholt netting for Sunderland this season, it seems unlikely David Moyes would part with a third of his strikeforce.

But the Hammers simply must land a striker next month, and it may well pull on Defoe’s heartstrings to play in claret and blue one more time.

Having scraped together two wins in succession, Bilic will be hoping for more of the same when his side head to Swansea on Boxing Day, but the bookies make the capital club 7/4 outsiders to beat Bob Bradley’s charges.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing

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